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Peekskill Paramount Bidders To Be Made Public Tuesday

The three bidders looking to run the Paramount Center for the Arts will be made public on Tuesday, according to city officials.
The three bidders looking to run the Paramount Center for the Arts will be made public on Tuesday, according to city officials. Photo Credit: Art Cusano

PEEKSKILL, N.Y. - The bids from three management companies looking to reopen the Paramount Center for the Arts will be released to the public Tuesday after being reviewed in private by the Common Council.

The Paramount Search Committee - comprised of city officials, business leaders, and community members - finished information-gathering meetings with the companies Tuesday evening, according to a news release issued Wednesday.

"The meetings were productive," Mayor Mary Foster said in the statement, which was issued through the city's public spokesperson Bob Knight.

The Paramount Search Committee will meet with the Common Council on Feb. 4 at a 10 p.m. executive session and offer their recommendations.

The meetings were moved to executive session because much of the proposers' information is proprietary and it is a real estate discussion, the statement said. Knight said that public presentations by the three bidders would be held at a later date.

Deb Milone, executive director of the Hudson Valley Gateway Chamber of Commerce, issued a statement regarding the naming of a new management company for the Paramount,

"We trust that the city has been diligent and thorough in its review of any prospective operator’s credentials and are hopeful that the new operator will have a different business model, yet one that continues the theater’s reputation as an amazing venue in which to view live performances, films and other entertainment.  The more the venue is used, the more foot traffic it will generate for downtown businesses and the more revenue it will bring into the city. We must keep the Paramount’s doors open, the lights on and the marquee lit."

The theater was built as a 1,500-seat movie theater by Paramount Pictures and opened in June 1930. Paramount sold the building in 1973, and it was acquired by the city in 1977 on a tax default. It has since operated as a performing arts center in various incarnations.

The city owns the building, but operations were handled by a nonprofit group that was also responsible for recent renovations to the theater. That group was dissolved late last year.

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