Entering The Final Stage
Friday, September 17th 2021
Over the course of the last few weeks, we have been working closely with our partners, H2M architects & engineers, to confirm the plans for the final stage of our renovation. Having their support and insight has been instrumental as we examine every element of our theater space to ensure that these necessary renovations are of the highest quality and that the improvements we make will endure long into the future.
H2M architects + engineers is a Long Island based consulting and design firm that operates throughout New York and New Jersey. They pride themselves on their ability to meet tough architectural challenges and find sustainable solutions. As is the case with the Cinema Arts Centre, social responsibility is at the forefront of their mission. H2M is committed to our local community, supporting many charitable, education, and community based causes and organizations. We are very grateful for the opportunity to work together with another local business that shares our values and strives to improve our community here on Long Island.
Throughout this stage of the planning process, we have made great efforts to use this opportunity to improve the movie-going experience for our patrons. While installing new seats will make coming to see a movie at the Cinema more comfortable, we also need to ensure that the theater’s new designs won’t change the dynamic of seeing a film with us. One of our biggest concerns has been how the new seating and renovated floors will affect the sight lines of our audience. With the support of H2M, we have worked through a number of options, and created a construction plan that will improve the layouts in the theaters so that every audience member will have a good view of the screen.
As we approach the final stages of our renovation, we will meet with H2M, along with our contractors, All Cinema, to set up a timeline for the final stage of the project and our reopening. An industry expert, and local family-run business, All Cinema, has served theaters on Long Island for more than 30 years. Our collaboration with these two local companies not only means that we will have some of the top experts in the industry working to improve our space, but that this project will also support local businesses here in our community.
We Have Received Our Portion of the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant
Monday, August 16th 2021
We have an encouraging update that we want to share with our community of supporters. We are pleased to announce that the Cinema Arts Centre has been awarded a vital economic grant that will assist in our reopening. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program, passed into law by congress in December 2020, was created to distribute $16 billion in economic aid to live venue operators, including movie theaters, concert spaces, museums and performing arts organizations.
For much of 2021, our co-directors, board of directors, and development team worked tirelessly to ensure that the Cinema would be eligible to receive a portion of these funds. With over 10,000 grant applicants, our inclusion was never guaranteed, but we were confident that this work would pay off and we would receive this necessary aid.
The Cinema Arts Centre is exactly the type of organization the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act was designed to support. The Cinema Arts Centre recognizes the work of the elected officials who championed this bill in congress. Specifically, we express our deepest gratitude to the officials from the State of New York, Senator Kristen Gillibrand, Senator Chuck Schumer, and Congressman Tom Suozzi who represents the Cinema Arts Centre’s congressional district, and their staff. Our New York congresspeople were fundamental in securing the support that this bill needed to pass, and their offices provided an enormous amount of support to the businesses and organizations seeking this aid.
The funds allocated to shuttered venues through the SVOG program are lifesaving for hard-hit organizations such as ours and will be vital to our successful reopening. Receiving these funds will allow us to repay the expenses incurred during our closure, including the improvements to our HVAC system. It will also help us to keep all of our projection equipment in working order, support staff payroll, cover rent and utilities payments, and pay the independent contractors who have continued to host our special events throughout this period.
The economic aid provided by the SVOG program will help to ease the immense economic burden created by the loss of revenue during the past year. While we take a moment to celebrate receiving this important assistance, we want to thank all of the members and donors who have supported the Cinema during this time. The financial support that we received through our giving campaign, membership, and ticket sales for virtual programs kept us afloat while government assistance was pending. As the necessary improvements to our space continue to progress, your support is still as vital as ever.
We have now reached a point in our renovations where our partners, H2M architects + engineers, will put their expertise to work to help us cross the finish line and plan for the completion of the work on our facility. The aid provided by the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant will make it easier to quickly complete these improvements and secure our place as a prominent arts institution in the Town of Huntington for generations to come. We are so excited about the improvements coming to the Cinema and can’t wait to welcome you all back at our grand reopening.
Before and After: Ductwork
Friday, July 16th 2021
Check out these before and after shots of the ductwork we replaced on the roof while updating our ventilation. Our air quality is going to be much improved!
Choose Your Own Seats When We Reopen!
Friday, July 9th 2021
We are thrilled to announce that upon reopening, online ticket buyers will be able to select and reserve their seats through our website! This will eliminate the need for our patrons to wait in line to enter the theater or to find and save seats for special events.
Demolition is Complete!
Thursday, July 1st 2021
We finished the demolition of our old floors this week. The last of the old floor tiles and concrete risers have been dismantled and disposed of. We also finished removing a few walls and storage closets in the theaters to make room for additional seating. We will be working closely with an engineer as we prepare to lay new concrete.
Removing the Floors
Thursday, June 24th 2021
The jackhammers have been working hard this week to remove the old floors. We had the screens covered to protect them from any dust and debris and our stadium seating is being dismantled.
An Update on Reopening, Renovations, and Tracking Our Progress
Wednesday, June 16th 2021
Dear Cinema Arts Community,
We hope this finds you and your friends and family well. It has been a hard year for everyone and the stress of the pandemic has taken its toll on each of us and our community. We appreciate your loyalty and concern these past months.
As we emerge on the other side of this devastating crisis, we would like to give you an update on where we stand on reopening the Cinema Arts Centre, important infrastructure improvements we are making and what you can expect when we welcome you back to the Cinema Arts Centre.
We know that all of our friends and supporters are eager for the day when we can finally sit down to enjoy a film together at the Cinema Arts Centre. Many have reached out to share questions, and also your excitement with us.
After being closed for over a year, lots of you are wondering “What’s going on?” You’re seeing other movie theaters reopen safely, and are wondering “Why not the Cinema Arts Centre?” The answer is simple… we are in the middle of renovations.
This past year has been the worst in the Cinema’s history but has also brought an opportunity to create a better Cinema Arts Centre with many vital improvements.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused significant financial stress on movie theaters, along with the rest of our world. However, the temporary closure of the Cinema presented an opportunity to make improvements in our physical space. Using funds that were raised for this exact purpose prior to the pandemic, we have been making significant renovations. The challenges of supply chain shortages and construction issues have resulted in unforeseen delays, but we are moving towards completion and reopening.
Here is where we are:
Air Quality and Ventilation: One of the most important steps we have taken to ensure we can protect the health of our patrons was to improve our air quality and ventilation system. Numerous air ducts were replaced, including some that were over fifty years old! Air filtration is being dramatically improved.
New Ceiling: Ceiling tiles are being replaced throughout the entire building.
New Seats for All Three Theaters: Initially, our plan was to replace our oldest and most damaged seats. But it became clear that all of our seats needed replacement. A significant down payment has been made and our new seats are being manufactured. The new seats include cup-holders, are more comfortable, and our new layout includes additional and improved wheelchair accessibility.
Touchless Payment: New equipment for processing touchless payments has been installed in the Box Office and Café.
New Carpets: All of our old carpeting has been removed in our lobby, gallery space, and our three theaters and new carpeting will be installed. A new concrete floor needed to be poured with the removal of floor tiles as well.
We have contracted an engineer to help complete required technical drawings which has resulted in changes to the Cinema’s emergency exits. This requires building permits, and other technical requirements.
Throughout this process we have worked closely with the Town of Huntington. The Cinema resides in a building owned by the town, so major changes need to be reviewed and approved by town representatives.
We are very excited about the new Cinema Arts Centre that is growing out of this challenging year.
Our project manager, architect, and engineer are working together to create a timeline for reopening the cinema. We hope to be able to announce our reopening date soon.
For updates on these and other plans, we have created this new page on our website where we will be posting new details as they develop.
Thank you for your continued engagement throughout this unprecedented period. With your support, we know our Cinema community will emerge stronger than ever.