Home » Island News

Alameda Theatre cuts check to city

Submitted by on 1, September 2, 2009 – 5:55 am8 Comments

8The folks at the Alameda Theatre have cut the city a check for a percentage of their profits that the city wasn’t expecting for a few more years.

The money will be used to help the city pay down its $7 million loan for the downtown parking garage.

The city charges the theater’s owner, Kyle Conner, a base rent plus 15 percent of gross sales over $3.25 million.  City officials thought it would take Conner, who opened the theater in May 2008, three years to hit that target. But he handed them a $162,390.12 check this week.

The theater complex restoration and garage project cost a combined $30 million.


  • Gary says:

    The theater and parking garage was the best investment made in park street in decades. Now let's some responsible mix use commercial/residential developement on the former car lots on the north end of park street.

  • Ticket buyer says:


    Pleeeze – "the best investment"? Even adding the check Conner paid the city – Do the returns on the investment even begin ti cover the interest on the money borrowed for this "best investment made in decades/" I will at least grant you it was not the worst investment in decades that the city has made. I believe that title may belong to AP&T.

  • Jon Spangler says:

    If my math is correct (done in my head as a guesstimate), Kyle Conner had gross sales of about $1 million above the $3.25 million floor, or $4.25 million. Not bad at all considering the state of the economy, etc.

    Ticket buyer is right though: how does Conner's $162, 390.12 check compare to the interest being paid on our development bonds? I'd bet that we are not exactly in the black on the two projects yet…

  • Gary says:

    Have you walked down Park Street on a Friday or Saturday night since the theater opened? It is a busy active commercial district. Not bad for the dismal state of the economy these days. Prior to the theater opening park street was drying in a booming economy.

  • AD says:

    The profit number is misleading as the base rent referred to above is only 10,000 a year, if I remember correctly. Basically, it's subsidized rent (by the city). Michele, can confirm that's still the case?

    • It looks like the deal that was on the table when the development agreement was discussed in 2005 was $12,000 a year base rent for each of the first six years of operation, $96,000 a year for years seven through 10 and increases of between 3 percent and 5 percent a year after that. Though what I'm reading seems to indicate that the theater operator paid a chunk of the cost to develop the theater as well?

      The city would get a 15 percent cut of anything over $3.25 million in gross sales for the early years and then 17.5 percent over $4.2 million in that later stretch (dropping to 12 percent when certain of the city's costs are repaid).

      The staff report on that, if anyone's interested, can be accessed here:

  • Barbara M says:

    I know lots of people have had their reservations about the project and I bet if I looked at the numbers closely I would cringe. However I can tell you this as a business owner on park street. In the rough times we are having right now it is a glue for our town. It is really fun to see how many people there are out and about on the weekends and evening. They are shopping, not spending huge money but they are looking and coming back and supporting when they can. I would hate to think about what it would be like on park street without it. It is one those things that adds to the value of living here. We have good schools, great activities for kids (sports etc), a mix of shopping and real center of town feeling with the theater. Now I cringe when I say a good mix of shopping as trust me I think this city is the poorest example of good commercial planning there is, actually at planning in general. Most of the gems in this city seemed to have happened in spite of the elected officials and staff. Jennifer Ott may be the one exception, like the fact that we have a theater or not she is one hard working smart cookie.

  • AD says:

    Quick math on the theater (rounded):

    162.390 is 15% of $1,083.141. Add the $3,250,000 you get $4,333,144 gross sales. What is the period of time over which this is to be divided? If a year, then that $11, 872 gross sales per day. At $10 a ticket, that's 1,187 visitors per day, every day. Is this true? Sounds unreal to me. The number would be different of course if the sum is divided over a different period. It would be nice to know what period is this check for, so we can get a realistic idea of the profit the theater is turning.

    Kyle Conner put some of his money into the operation but the city loaned him the chunk. How is that loan repayment going?

    What is the revenue from the garage, and what is it used to repay? Supposedly, that's how the HUD money for the garage was going to be paid back.

    These are some of the questions that would help put this story into perspective.

    Also, the moment of truth on the theater's profitability will arrive when the below market rent goes up (x8) and Kyle Conner has the option to purchase the building from the city (late next year, I think). If he does, that would demonstrate commitment to the operation and faith in its success. The city's projections were that the theater will continue to operate for the life of the loans (20 and 30 years, or something like that)

Leave a comment!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.