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Downtown Dallas To Welcome First Movie Theater Since 2000

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DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – Movies, music, food and drinks are all coming to one corner in southwest downtown Dallas. That’s where an Alamo Drafthouse Cinema location will open this time next year. It will be the first theater downtown since the last one went dark in 2000.

The neighborhood is known as Cedars South Side, and sits just south of Interstate 30, an area that’s taken on a different look in the last eight to 10 years.

Ever since she moved from Las Colinas to the Cedars/South Side neighborhood two and a half years ago, Griselle Romero watched change happen. “It’s kind of an up and coming area that’s being revitalized,” she said.

Loft apartments, a boutique hotel, retail and music venues, will soon be joined by something downtown Dallas hasn’t seen in 14 years — a movie theater.

But Romero explained, “It’s not just a typical movie theater. It’s the Alamo Drafthouse! Which is great.”

DFW’s first Alamo Drafthouse Cinema opened in Richardson in the fall.

The new movie theater will be a place where first-run movies, are enjoyed with fresh food, cocktails and local brews.

Alamo Drafthouse DFW owner and COO Bill DiGaetano said, “It’s a gathering place rather than just an area in the west end for people to go and see a movie in a traditional setting.”

Even before the first showing at the theater DiGaetano had an eye on a Lamar Street location, just a half mile south of the Omni Dallas Hotel. The plans include 1,000 seats, eight screens, a second floor bar and outdoor patios.

John Crawford, with Downtown Dallas, Inc., said excitedly, “It’s kind of lights, camera, action as far as downtown Dallas is concerned.”

Crawford explained why he thinks the theater will succeed when the last one closed in 2000. “Fourteen years is 14 years. We didn’t have the critical mass. We weren’t as far along with the revitalization as we are today.”

The new development is happening with a nod to the past. They’ll reuse the bricks from an abandoned warehouse in the Alamo Drafthouse construction.

Developers estimate the theater will attract 400,000 to 500,000 people through the doors — and into the downtown neighborhood each year.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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