The Hamilton County Commission will vote next week on whether to provide a 15-year property tax break to the developers of a new downtown movie theater in Chattanooga, but at least one commissioner said he’d have trouble voting for it.
Commissioner John Allen Brooks questioned former Chattanooga mayor John Kinsey and Paul Brock, president of River City Co., the nonprofit downtown development group, about how many jobs the new theater would bring.
Mr. Brock said no studies have been done to determine how many jobs the new cinema would bring, but he said the Ochs Center, formerly the Community Research Council, has done a survey determining that most people who go to the current Bijou Theater stay downtown to shop and eat.
RiverCity officials announced Wednesday that Carmike theaters would be building a new, 12-screen, stadium-seating theater on what is now a parking lot at Broad and Third streets. The new theater, scheduled to open in November 2009, would replace the nearby Bijou, also owned by Carmike, officials said.
Commissioner Greg Beck asked whether patrons of the new theater would still be able to park in the nearby garage and have their parking validated at the theater.
Mr. Brock said that’s something developers would have to work out with the theater owners.
For full details, see tomorrow’s Chattanooga Times Free Press.