Merger Won't Slow Boulevard Cineplex 

click to enlarge street48_richmondsteel_100.jpg

The green light is still lit for a 12-screen movie theater project planned at the intersection of North Boulevard and Leigh Street — but nobody's stepping on the gas just yet, according to Charles B. Moss Jr., co-founder of the company developing the project.

Plans for the Boulevard Square project were first reported by Style in April.

"We're moving forward with the project. We don't have a timetable, [but] it's a top priority for us," said Moss of New York-based Bow Tie Partners. "The Boulevard is a green light — it's been a green light for some time."

Bow Tie's recent acquisition of 95 movie screens located in Connecticut and Maryland from cinema operator Crown Theatres LLC is not expected to slow project plans for the Boulevard Square redevelopment, Moss says.

The architectural plans for the project, however, are still a work in progress. Once those plans are completed "then we have to bid the project, and that will give us a timeline" for completion, Moss says.

The Boulevard Square project would reconfigure the property from its past as an industrial complex — Richmond Steel Inc. still occupies the property — into a stadium-seating Cineplex called Movieland that will be accompanied by more than 13,000 square feet of retail shops and restaurants.

Richmond Steel plans to vacate the property in about eight months. Last week, the manufacturer announced it's moving its main facility to Chester, near Route 10 and Jefferson Davis Highway. The company also plans to open another facility on Dinneen Street, within city limits.

"We're trying to maintain a presence here in Richmond," said Tommy Mayers, vice president of Richmond Steel.

Moss' company also owns Jefferson Square, a vacant property that takes up nearly an entire block in downtown Richmond between Main, Cary, Third and Fourth streets. The site previously served as the Richmond Times-Dispatch's distribution plant. S

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