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1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 182 (148)

1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition
1952 Theatre Catalog
1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 182
Page 182

1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 182

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A DIFFERENT CONCEPTION could produce a slightly more rectangular building with a large Recreation and Shopping center down the middle and open at both ends for ventilation and light. Under this arrangement the car capacity could be increased to 1200; with the large arcade under the back ramps.


Rochester, Syracuse, and Albany.

On the basis of todayis building costs, each project. would cost from three to four million dollars, exclusive of land.

Haven, Newark, Dayton, St. Louis, Providence, Trenton, Harrisburg, Omaha, Des Moines, Wilmington, Kansas City, Baltimore, Washington, Pittsburgh,

PLOT PLAN at the original proposal illustrates the manner in which orthodox exterior parking iacilities could be added to serve the patrons who wish to shop rather than attend the drive-in theatre.

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Careful estimates indicate that 11s from the shopping and recreation .reas would amortize the cost of the center in from 20 to 25 years.

With the idea of an indoor drive-in roughed out on paper, I was convinced that it was not an idle dream but a practical answer to a definite need and the beginning of what may well become the most significant development in the field of exhibition in the years to come.

The Idea Takes Form

I went to Servis and Van Doren, consulting engineers, outlined my plans, and commissioned them to translate my rough sketches into preliminary drawings which would show exactly what I had in mind. As we discussed the idea, the engineers were enthusiastic, agreeing that it was entirely feasible, and suggesting some additional details.

Each side of the theatre would measure about 800 by 600 feet, and the roof would be supported by only three columns. This latter detail, certainly unique in theatre construction, takes into consideration the heavy snow loads which the center's roof would have to bear in such cities as Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, and Buffalo. The supporting columns would eliminate parking spaces for only about seven cars.

The projection booths, suspended from the ceiling on each side of the theatre, would be about 240 feet from the screen. The overall size of the screens would be 62 feet high by 58 feet wide, with a picture size of 40 feet by 54 feet.

In-car speakers would be used, just as in an outdoor drive-in, but instead of being mounted on posts the speakers would be housed in metal cabinets built on the rail of the walkway in back of each ramp.

The lighting would be much like that of a conventional drive-in, with ramplights, roadway lights, and directional signs serving most of the illumination requirements.

A problem which we thought would pose Serious difficulties-how to eliminate automobile exhaust fumes-has been solved in several different ways, and the most satisfactory method is yet to be selected.

While certain areas of the country might have sufficient population concentration to support an indoor drive-in with a capacity of 1,100 cars and 1,000 walk-in patrons, there might exist in a particular area certain factors-economic or otherwise-which would rule out the practicality of so large a project. Moreover, there are many localities which are not densely enough populated to insure profitable operation of such a center, but which could well support a scaled-down version of one. With this in mind, two alternate plans, both em THEATRE CATALOG l?52
1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 182