(More Allen McInnis/Gazette pictures here.)
Well, the theatre is in the news again. I had a story in today’s Gazette about work being done there this week. Since the owner (Claridge Properties Ltd.) isn’t talking, it’s unclear if this means there is going to finally be some action.
Here’s is today’s story:
New act for old Seville?
Boarded-up landmark is undergoing work to reinforce its facade, suggesting the owners might be preparing to sell
Passersby got a peek yesterday at the long-shuttered box office of the Seville Theatre on St. Catherine St. W., but it’s unclear whether the landmark building is about to be resurrected.
In an effort to reinforce the former theatre’s facade, which is protected by a heritage designation, workers removed wood panels that for years have covered the building at street level.
Steel beams and chain-link fencing were installed to support the Ste. Catherine-side wall, as well as a section on Chomedey St., where part of the wall collapsed in 1994.The owners of the building informed the city the work was to be done but they have not submitted plans to redevelop the land, said Jacques-Alain Lavallée, a spokesperson for the Ville Marie borough.
The current work is not being performed at the city’s request.
“The owners’ engineers recommended it,” Lavallée said.
Officials at Claridge Properties Ltd., which bought the theatre and the rest of the block between Chomedey and Lambert Closse Sts. in 2002 for $10 million, did not return calls from The Gazette yesterday.
Claridge – an investment company controlled by Montreal’s Bronfman family – initially planned to create an environmentally friendly, mixed-use complex featuring retail space, offices, apartments and condominiums. That plan fell through.
The entire block (on the north side of Ste. Catherine) has been abandoned since October, when the last tenant, the Bombay Palace restaurant, moved out.
The wall-reinforcement work may be a sign Claridge is ready to sell, said Roger Peace, president of the Shaughnessy Village Association, which represents neighbourhood residents.
“We understand they’re trying to fix it up and clean it up to make it easier to sell,” he said.
The rest here.