Future of Spokane's IMAX theater is up in the air




Posted on December 30, 2013 at 8:30 PM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 31 at 6:20 AM

SPOKANE, Wash.--The IMAX Theater in Spokane has stood as an icon in Riverfront Park since the late 1970'S but it's long term future is up in the air.

Dwindling attendance and the need to upgrade to digital technology means the City is in the midst of making a decision about what to do with the theater.

"It appears that the current plan is to not convert the IMAX into a digital format because there's an expense as far as converting the current projector that's been here since 1978 into a digital projection system and we've also had dwindling attendance as well so it's a combination of newer technology and trying to keep people interested," said Debbie Dobson, Assistant Manager of Riverfront Park.

Dobson said the cost could be anywhere from $500,000 to 1.2 million dollars for a new projector and that may be out of what the City can afford in late December.

Dobson said the City is working on a master plan for the park and would like citizens to weigh in on the future of the IMAX.

"At this particular time there is a master plan for Riverfront Park that's being developed and we do continue to take public comment," said Dobson.

People can go visit the park's website here and click the link to the 2014 Master Plan to give public comment.

Despite all the uncertainty surrounding the IMAX, it will show movies again beginning in March.

"We will be show 3 new films for sure including Titans Of The Ice Age, Kenya and another new release we aren't naming yet. In total we should have 6 films. So we want Spokane to come out and support them," said Dobson.

A decision of the long term future of the park should be made in the next 2 to 3 months.