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Agency Seeks Costs For Theater's Partial Demolition
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Presented with several options for repairing the Del Rio Theater building and making it safe for occupancy and theater shows, the Riverbank Redevelopment Agency on Monday, April 13 directed staff to get cost estimates for demolishing the southern part of the building known as the Bingo Hall and constructing a new exterior south wall for the restaurant and Suite A.

Arts groups such as Riverbank Community Theatre (RCT) made a brief slide presentation illustrating the success of recent shows such as "Oklahoma" and "Miracle on 34th Street" in drawing several thousand patrons to the downtown. If the Suite A section can be saved from demolition, RCT representatives offered to lease it to put on shows in a smaller theater seating about 100 people.

Noting the Agency needs about $1 million to correct structural problems and has only $400,000, Economic Development & Housing Director Tm Ogden offered the Agency four options; keep the building closed until more redevelopment funding is available; launch another bond; demolish the south part of the building where the structural problems lie and replace it with an inexpensive, prefabricated building; or demolish the whole structure and rebuild.

City Manager Rich Holmer announced that regular council and agency meetings will take place in the Riverbank Community Center for the next few months due to downtown construction. They will start Monday, April 20 with a budget workshop at 6 p.m.