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Westhampton Theater redevelopment plans to be presented; closing delayed

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The Westhampton Theater at Grove and Libbie avenues and a neighboring office have been sold. (PHOTO: Evelyn Rupert)

RICHMOND, Va. – Time has quickly passed since it was reported in January that the longtime Westhampton Theater in the near West End would close at the end of this year, after 77 years of operation.

Regal Cinemas owned the 1.3 acres at 5706 Grove Avenue up until March 2014 when they sold it to the Cametas family for $1.75 million. The theater, built in 1938,  has 750 seats between two auditoriums.

Once Regal announced plans to wind down its operations at the underperforming cinema, the Cametas family enlisted broker Jason Guillot of Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer “to explore its options.”

Regal spokesperson Russ Nunley said earlier this year that the Westhampton would close earlier, or later, based on the needs of the new owners.

A staff member told a CBS 6 reporter on Friday, Nov. 27, that they had not been told the theater would close at the end of the year.

The theater will continue to operate until next summer, according to a new report by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

The report said that Guillot and his team have been busy meeting with neighborhood and merchant associations, focus groups and interested parties.

A redevelopment plan will be presented at a community meeting at St. Christopher’s Middle School auditorium, 711 St. Christopher’s Road, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 2.

The early plans include a “restaurant with a large patio, retail and office space and 10 condominiums with underground parking,” according to the RTD report.

Guillot also told the RTD that the “brick facade of the iconic theater and its marquis will be incorporated into the redesign.”

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