The Glen Rose 4-B Economic Development Tax Corporation met Monday to discuss possible projects at a public hearing.
The project that spurred the most the interest from the community was the funding acquisition, renovation and operation of the Palace Theater in the historic downtown square.
Board member Darrell Best said the building was the second movie theater ever built in Glen Rose and most recently served as a museum. The owner, Tom Cecil, is willing to sell and would like to see it converted back to a theater, Best said.
In order to complete the renovation, the facility would need seats, a projector, a screen and drapes.
“The (project) would achieve three purposes,” Best said. “It would be a community theater, it would be a model for 4-B to use for downtown businesses and (it would contribute) to the revitalization of the downtown area.”
The building would be sold through an owner-financed loan of $300,000 on a 15-year note with six percent interest, Best said.
Community support for the project was mixed.
Mayor Pam Miller said she thought it was a good idea, but would like to see a third-party come in to run the theater.
“We don’t want the 4-B to be so strapped for cash,” Miller said. “Before you purchase the property you need to make sure we have the financial means to support it.”
Bob Miller, a Glen Rose resident, said he had worked at the Palace when it was still a theater and felt it was too small of a venue to fulfill proposals for its use.
Lila Carter, however, favors the theater reopening.
“Ever since I moved back into this city it has been my dream to have the Palace Theater open again,” Carter said. “We have something cities all over Texas would kill for. Do your homework and investigating and see if it is viable.”
Board member Chris Bryant felt that supporting the theater would be a first-rate model for economic development in the city.
“Other downtown businesses have taken that risk,” Bryant said. “What better way to support economic development (in Glen Rose)?”