The Boyd Theatre on Chestnut Street is Philly's last grand movie palace, a vacant Art Deco marvel waiting for its next chapter. Later this month the Historical Commission will hear a proposal to demolish all but the Chestnut Street facade, sacrificing the remarkably intact, fanciful interior with a swanky eight-screen multiplex.
Friends of the Boyd will hold a rally outside of the theater at 1910 Chestnut Street on Tuesday, December 10 at 11:30am as a show of support for the theater's preservation along with the Preservation Alliance, which will use the occasion to announce the rest of its 2013 Endangered Properties List.
The Boyd has been vacant since 2002 and has been subject to demolition threats before. The Boyd was also on the Preservation Alliance's Endagered Properties list back in 2007, and the following year it was listed the National Trust for Historic Preservation as one of the 11 Most Endangered Historic Places. At that time it was threatened when its owner Live Nation was contemplating selling it off to a developer who wanted to use the property for parking.
Ashley Hahn is an independent writer with a background in historic preservation and city planning. She started Eyes on the Street for PlanPhilly in 2011 and was PlanPhilly's managing editor from 2015-2017. Ashley has lived in 12 zip codes that she can think of, including neighborhoods in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and New York. She is a Philadelphian by choice.