Curtains on The Theater Building


A movie theater, a roller rink, live theater, a beer distributor, a pasta restaurant, an after-hours joint, the first home of the Rockaway Artists Alliance…those are just some things that called the Park Theater home through the years. But for all its various businesses, it became mostly known as a vacant eyesore as the owner, Michael Koening, let the building fall into disrepair. It stood empty for almost 20 years. Now it’s gone. The building was finally demolished this week.

In the summer of 2018, the building was sold for more than $6 million and was immediately earmarked for development by the Marcal Group, the group building new condos and commercial space directly across the street.

The Rockaway Times got a last glance inside the building in 2018. Some photos here (including the one with a chandelier) suggest some of the grandeur of the old structure, but the place was crumbling and was beyond rehabilitation.

As for what’s planned, Seth Caller of Marcal, said he couldn’t comment at this point. Previously, Marcal indicated that additional residential and commercial units were planned.