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Chilliwack Paramount makes top endangered places list

The Chilliwack Paramount Theatre building just made the Top 10 Endangered Places list put out by the Heritage Canada Foundation. - JENNA HAUCK/ PROGRESS FILE
The Chilliwack Paramount Theatre building just made the Top 10 Endangered Places list put out by the Heritage Canada Foundation.
— image credit: JENNA HAUCK/ PROGRESS FILE

The Chilliwack Paramount Theatre has just made the Top 10 Endangered Places list put out by the Heritage Canada Foundation.

"It's great news," said Laura Reid, member of the Save the Chilliwack Paramount group, which submitted a nomination in February.

"Thanks to our hard-working group, the Paramount Theatre has been included on this annual list."

The 1949 movie theatre building is not a designated heritage site but it is listed on City of Chilliwack's heritage inventory.

The building was added to the "endangered places" list based on its historical significance, the urgency of the situation and the level of community support.

"This will hopefully add some national exposure to the cause," Reid said.

The group has amassed about $20,000 in pledges and another $150,000 in pledged services and materials in kind, to start on the restoration of the building. But it will take an estimated $300,000 just to restore and repair the building.

"Architecturally, the cinema declares its roots in the 'International style' — characterized by vertical and horizontal lines with little ornamentation — with traces of Art Deco influences in its signage and fluted façade. Solidly built, the movie house features laminated firewalls and is constructed of reinforced concrete and 60 tons of structural steel," according to the description on the endangered list.

Find out more details at: http://www.heritagecanada.org/en/issues-campaigns/top-ten-endangered

The Save the Chilliwack Paramount Theatre group submitted its business proposal to the city on June 21 and is waiting for a response. The proposal included a plan to transform the site into a single-screen, repertory-type theatre offering 600 seats for patrons to screen vintage, independent, alternative or non-mainstream films.

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

twitter.com/CHWKjourno

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