Northfield EDA working to provide 'creative incentives' to bring movie theater to town - Northfield MN: News

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Northfield EDA working to provide 'creative incentives' to bring movie theater to town

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Posted: Thursday, April 24, 2014 12:51 pm | Updated: 11:50 pm, Fri Apr 25, 2014.

Chris Brown is passionate about bringing an eight-screen movie theater to Northfield, similar to the one he bought in Red Wing four years ago.

Northfield City Councilor Rhonda Pownell says that having a movie theater in Northfield has been identified over and over as a missing piece of the community since Southgate Cinema, originally built in 1982, closed its doors for good in August 2008.

Both talked about a proposed movie theater project Thursday morning during the Economic Development Authority meeting, where Brown, Brown’s father Paul (via conference call) and Dan Plein, CFO for Red Wing Mall (where Red Wing Cinema 8 resides), asked the EDA to consider an incentive package to help bring the theater to town.

“Without assistance from the city of Northfield and possibly Rice County, we won’t be able to bring a theater to Northfield that it deserves,” Paul Brown said. “If we can’t, we have a couple of other communities we are looking at. We feel Northfield is a good fit, though.”

Standing in the way of making the project a reality in Northfield is a rather large gap in funding. Brown and his company, CABB, LLC, first approached the city of Northfield with a request for a $300,000 grant payable over 10 years, after payment of property taxes and only if the business remains open. In addition, a request was also made for a revolving loan of $250,000.

Those needs increased recently when the project grew from a 22,000-square-foot proposed theater to 26,000 square feet and the construction costs increased $325,000, making it a $3.8 million project.

Plein said that based on the increased size of the theater and the projected Rice County taxes, which are projected to be nearly $100,000 a year, CABB, LLC is looking at a funding shortfall.

“If we’re going to make this a reality, we’re going to have to come up with creative ways to close the gaps,” he said. “Taxes here are unbelievably high.”

After the presentation, members of the EDA discussed the next steps, taking into account the increased scope of the project. Before a motion was made to move the discussion to the next level, EDA members not only had questions, but also reservations on whether an eight-screen movie theater was even sustainable in Northfield.

“I’m skeptical that there would be enough traffic for a theater [of this size] to be successful here,” EDA member Fred Rogers said. “Have you looked at other college towns for comparison sake?”

To that, Chris Brown replied that the college student population really wasn’t factored in and that he is comparing Northfield and Red Wing in terms of the community.

“We really aren’t aiming this to the college kids,” he said. “The demographics we’re looking at are seniors, families and kids. That’s why we are going for the eight screens, which means we’ll be able to bring in first-run movies.”

After listening to Rice County officials take TIF money off the table and exploring the possibility of abatements and before making a motion for city staff and a newly-formed EDA subcommittee to move forward, Pownell said that she would like to see the data that would show that the project could be successful.

After more discussion, all on the EDA agreed.

“It is premature to talk about this because there are new numbers,” said City Councilor and EDA member David Ludescher. “I would want to see the new numbers before we move on.”

Currently, the Northfield EDA does not have a loan program to fit the request of CABB, LLC. The EDA would need to consider an alternative to the approved loan program in order to meet the incentive request.

Furthermore, city staff has not received an application or full project performa at this time as CABB, LLC preferred to gauge the interest of the EDA in offering a non-traditional incentive package. With the vote to move to the next step, the company has agreed to provide the requested information for staff to review and then again be discussed at the May meeting.

Plein remained hopeful that the city of Northfield and Rice County will be able to come up with an incentive package that would meet the needs of all.

“The new numbers are definitely a factor and we’ll try to narrow the gap,” he said. “We’re not going to throw in the towel. We’re still interested in Northfield, but the numbers have to work. We’re going to give it our best shot.”

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  • Discuss

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  • sugarangel posted at 9:06 pm on Wed, May 28, 2014.

    sugarangel Posts: 1

    I think Northfield should definitely get a new movie theater. It's a college town, and there are many families and kids, but there are not many fun activities to do besides bowling or going downtown. Plus, movie theaters are expensive enough as it is without having to drive to lakeville, apple valley, or faribault to watch a 2 hour movie. I think a new Northfield movie theater is a great idea!

  • College Student posted at 8:12 am on Tue, Apr 29, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    Oh my goodness... Yes, I know the difference between a grant and a loan... that why I said government should not give out grants. Low interest loans is lending out money to a business with the expectation of getting that money back plus interest to cover the costs and the percentage of people who skip out on the loans and go bankrupt. Which I again still think that is wrong because basically the loan becomes a grant!

    So handing out grants paid from tax payers to busineses is wrong. Handing out low interest loans is acceptable. I never said anything about no interest loans so I'm not sure why you used that in your response.

    I'm not sure what groups your are talking about so I won't comment on my thoughts in regards to them however from what you said they give out grants and loans which if they give out loans then there is no need to get rid of the group. One could even argue that the profits from the loans could then be reinvested in grants but my thoughts is not with tax payer money.

    Tax payer money is money that is taken not donated and that money should only be spent on the basic needs of the community. I do think there should be an option for people to donate money to fund grants for businesses if they wish.

    I don't see how you think that is inconsistent as grants are different than loans.

  • steakholder posted at 11:22 am on Sun, Apr 27, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Oops..that's $25,000 in micro grants, not small loans.

  • steakholder posted at 11:22 am on Sun, Apr 27, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Does anyone realize the Northfield EDA has a micro grant program for grants of up to $5000. This year they're budgeted to give out $25,000 in small loans.

    These loans are supposed to be given out in the name of creating new jobs.

    So how does buying the Hideaway a new freezer create any new jobs? When the Eclectic goat buys Glass Garden beads and moves across the street, how does that create new jobs? Combing two businesses into one? Sounds like it reduces jobs.

    Anyway, the point is, nobody seems aware that we already give out the same total amount in micro grants every year as what the movie theater is asking for. The difference is that giving money to a movie theater would create jobs and add to the tax base, where as giving money to small businesses downtown does not generally create any new jobs or contribute to the tax base.

    Not only does the EDA give away tax dollars, but they pay someone, the NEC to do that for them. So if it bothers you that we give away tax dollars, it must really frost you that it costs us money to pay someone to decide who to give that money away to.

    We also give away a lot of money in the form of forgivable loans, essentially a grant. I've got to go look that up also.

    I'm generally in favor of helping businesses and non profits, but I generally believe that we should be supporting new businesses, or significant expansion of existing businesses, rather than just giving businesses money for operating expenses that don't really change anything.

  • steakholder posted at 11:04 am on Sun, Apr 27, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    So you ARE saying that we shouldn't give out any grants to any businesses, period. For instance, the micro grant program of up to $5,000 grants to local businesses....we should not do that right????

    You said...

    "If you can't build a theater with your own money and expect to be able to make ends meet and make a profit enough to justify doing the work and the risk then you have no business in this town!"

    I'm assuming you're rational, and that you wouldn't pick or choose what types or sizes of businesses deserve grants. That if you have to be able to run a movie theater with your own money, then you'd have to be able to run a coffee shop or a restaurant with your own money.

    What you are choosing to ignore, is the fact that if you loan a business tax payer money, then they are not building a movie theater, or running whatever business they are starting or running, with their own money.

    They are doing it with tax payer money. So by your own statement, they have no business in Northfield.

    When you loan tax payer money, interest free, to a private business, you are putting money in their pocket to the tune of the interest they would have paid on the loan.

    Also, in many cases, the tax payers are loaning them money that they would not have otherwise been able to borrow even if they wanted to pay a bank interest.

    Loaning money is a cost to the entity doing the loaning. That's why banks charge you to borrow money college student. When the tax payers loan their money to a private business, it costs the tax payers money.

    My sense is that you don't understand that basic concept.

    The cost of a loan is smaller than the cost of a grant, but there is a cost, and you are ignoring that.

    So if you say businesses should succeed or fail only with their own money, or they have not business being in Northfield, that statement applies to grants and loans.

    So you are saying that we might as well dissolve the EDA, because that's all they do is give out grants and loans. In fact, they pay money to a local non-profit, the NEC, to decide who gets those grants and loans.

    I just think you're being remarkably irrational or inconsistent in your argument.

  • College Student posted at 4:50 am on Sun, Apr 27, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    "Right, I understand what you're saying. So according to you, the EDA shouldn't give out any grants or loans to businesses, because that puts money directly into the pockets of those business owners.

    actually I was talking about the grants! I never mentioned low interest loans... a low interest loan program that does not cost the tax payers is not an issue... Clearly you can't see the difference between giving a business 300,000 and having a business take a 300,000 loan and eventually pay back the city and the tax payers.

  • steakholder posted at 12:54 pm on Sat, Apr 26, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Right, I understand what you're saying. So according to you, the EDA shouldn't give out any grants or loans to businesses, because that puts money directly into the pockets of those business owners.

    Giving a business a now interest loan puts money in the pocket of the business owner.

    If a business like the Archer House can get someone to build them a parking lot, instead of paying for it themselves, that's money in the pocket of a business owner.

    When we fund the NEC, and it provides free services to businesses, that puts money into the pockets of those business owners. They get to save the money that they would have spent on consultants.

    So why should my tax dollars go to pay for the NEC, and then when I walk into the Hideway, I still have to pay the same amount for my coffee?

    The only difference between that and the theater issue, is the size of the gift per business. When you add up all the grants the EDA gives out every year, it's the same amount of money as what the movie theater is asking for.

    I'm not positive it's right to give the movie theater $300,000. However, if you're going to say it's not right, then don't remain ignorant of the all the other ways that your money is going to support businesses that you still have to pay to use.

  • College Student posted at 12:39 pm on Sat, Apr 26, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    You got it backwards... because in business if there is enough demand... then you have enough sales to justify building your business. If they NEED a handout from the city of 300,000 plus other long term loans then there is not enough demand to cover expenses let alone make a profit!

    We don't build roads, and trails based on cost of each segment of road nor do we have a system in place to charge drivers or bikers a rate based on there usage... now going to the movie from a for profit business owner is completely different if you can't understand that than I guess I can see why you think so... differently.

  • College Student posted at 8:25 am on Sat, Apr 26, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    ugh... always twisting words out of context and drawing meaning that is not there...

    Giving a grant of $300,000 to a business to create a business is not fair. That money is going directly into the the pockets of people looking to make money! Parking spaces are what we pay taxes for in urban downtowns because of the density.

    I don't see how you justify that taxpayers hard earned money should be taken from there paychecks to help fund a private for profit business in which the tax payer has to PAY AGAIN to watch any movie they wish to see. Sure public parking spaces benefit business however anybody traveling downtown is NOT required to benefit any business. They simply could be visiting the post office or going to enjoy the park! There is zero chance of benefit to the community by giving them a tax break...

    Basically when you boil it down your giving the business owner a huge tax brake and shifting the burden of the cities debt onto the taxpayers to come up with the increased difference.

    Heck if the city gave me $300,000 that I didn't have to pay back I sure could find a great way to make a nice business hire a few minimum wage workers and then I guess I could be part of the royal "job creators" meaning I would get tons of tax breaks and pay a cheaper tax rate than you citizens! ....

  • AGHAST posted at 5:40 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    AGHAST Posts: 9

    WOW!!! Something NEW n Northfield . What a novel idea. Instead of always trying to promote Northfield as "progressive" and "forward thinking", why not go ahead and do something progressive. Seems to me there should be something more to brag about than Jesse James Days that brings lots of people to town. But after the three-day affair is over, what is there to do in Northfield. There is no reason why a good theater couldn't be started here. the former theater with "sticky floors, etc.," is gone, history and really shouldn't even enter into the discussion. Try supporting something new in this community. You might be might just turn out to be fun.

  • steakholder posted at 4:07 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Funny college student, you've got it completely backwards. You assume hundreds of people will use the Tiger Trail, but that nobody will go to a movie theater.

  • steakholder posted at 4:05 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    I appreciate that you're being consistent. It drives me nuts that people ignore all the money we give away to downtown businesses, and then they get worked up over giving money to this movie theater.

    We should either do it, or not. Not do it for one business, but not for another.

    Personally, at some point, I think you have to do something, or you just won't get businesses. I can really understand though how some people feel we shouldn't give anything. Part of being "big business friendly" is that they'll expect some help.

    You're right, the risk is, if it fails, there's a big empty building. There's no way around that. Even if we didn't help fund the theater, and they build anyway, that's still a risk. It's a good point. Not much you can do with a movie theater besides show movies. As opposed to a commercial building that's more generic and more flexible.

    If we don't get the movie theater, it won't ruin my day. It''ll be fun to watch this unfold.

  • MrZ posted at 2:23 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    MrZ Posts: 25

    Steak I agree with a lot of what you say. I personally don't believe any tax payer money should go to help out existing businesses, nor ones that cant prove they can stay afloat without *taxpayer* money. You have made a lot of great points in this article as well as others I have read from you. I believe in this day and age our tax money should be better used, including that debacle called the Tiger Trail.
    Northfield needs a better tax base return then what it seems we give out. You cannot expect to grow a city if they continue to sit on their butts and help out only local and failing businesses. If you went to a bank and told them this same thing. They would laugh you out of the bank. Why would they wanna give a loan to a business that already can show it will fail. But it seems us taxpayers are expected to. Even if we say no as tax payers we don't have final say.

    Hopefully this year the council will change and become more big business friendly while still finding ways to keep downtown welcoming and a decent place to shop.

    I still believe starting out smaller and growing with demand would be the best goal for this.

    What is gonna happen if it fails within 2yrs? Its another Empty Building that is really worthless to find a company to move into because of how most are designed. I worked construction and built 2 movie theaters in my time. and it would cost Alot to make it so a business could move in. Most business would probly just wanna build another building.

  • steakholder posted at 1:59 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    If spending $300,000 to help a local business start up bothers you....

    Do you realize that every year, the EDA funds the NDDC for about $35,000, and the NEC for $60,000. Basically, a hundred thousand dollars a year, spent to help local businesses.

    $95,000 x 10 = $950,000

    So people are upset that we'd spend $300,000 over 10 years to help business, but not upset that in the same 10 years, we'll spend 1 million dollars to fund 2 non profits, which essentially provide lobbying and support services to local businesses.

    So it's a million dollars subsidy to local businesses, mostly downtown.

  • steakholder posted at 1:05 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Scott...the fact that you think we can go turn some cornfield into a movie theater is probably indicative of why you didn't get elected. The added infrastructure might make such an option even more unworkable.

    We have to assume as well that some of what is being said is rhetoric. If you go to the city and say "we can afford to build this and make the business work without help, but we'd still like some", you 'd never get any money.

    On the other hand, you again raise the question, why isn't the land owner negotiating the price? Why doesn't Ray Cox drop the price $100K?

    I just want to point out again that if the EDA shouldn't help out this business, then we really shouldn't be helping any businesses in town, because the principle is the same, whatever argument you make as to why we shouldn't help them. we give tax payer money to businesses, directly and/or indirectly, or don't we?

  • bluedodge posted at 12:51 pm on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    bluedodge Posts: 1

    The city of Northfield helps them out this time. Down the road they fall behind on taxes Then who will bail them out. Like Owatonna struggles

  • steakholder posted at 11:21 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    Soitgoes...your argument is like saying that since Butler's steak and ale wasn't successful, and Pan Pan wasn't successful, then no other restaurant will ever be successful in Northfield.

    Since those restaurants closed, Carbone's and the Ole Cafe have opened, and both appear to be wildly successful, at least judging from the number of cars parked outside both establishments any time I drive by them.

    It wasn't that Northfield can't support a restaurant. It was that Northfield didn't support those restaurants, you can speculate as to why, or that they were just not run in a manner that allowed them to be successful.

    I would make the same argument about movie theaters.

    I think government has to be careful not to get in the business of deciding what businesses should or should not open. That's something the market should work out.

    A few years back, we didn't let CVS open a store in the crossings, and there it sits, empty.

    If people think we shouldn't give money to this business to help it get started, that's fine, but then let's not keep spending the same amount of money every year to subsidize downtown businesses, which are not adding jobs, or adding to the tax rolls.

    Let's stop the micro grants, and the flood loans, etc. etc., because that's no different, in fact it's worse, than supporting a new business.

  • steakholder posted at 11:14 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    So college are thus advocating that governments, like the city of Northfield, and likewise, the EDA should not give money out to any businesses, downtown or otherwise, period. No grants, no loans?

    So you'd ask Brett Reese to give back the $100,000 we gave him?

    You would therefore be arguing that we should dissolve the EDA, since they essentially exist to give or loan money to businesses.

    Also, I assume you'd say that the city government should not pay for things like parking lots, which specifically benefit private businesses? In other words, they should pay for and provide their own parking?

    Or for that matter, if bike trails are being built to make it easier for people to get downtown, which benefits local businesses, we shouldn't pay for those either? No tiger trail?

    I assume also then that since the NDDC exists primarily to make downtown vibrant to benefit downtown businesses, that you'd agree that the city of Northfield should no longer fund this group?

    Also, since the NEC is designed to benefit local businesses, that the city should no longer fund that organization either?

    Just making sure you understand that those are all the logical conclusions of your argument.

    Maybe I could go along with that. Let's not use tax payer money to benefit any business in town, directly or indirectly. Interesting thought.

  • ScottOney posted at 11:12 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    ScottOney Posts: 24

    According to the Browns, a theater on this site, at the asking price, is unworkable. The EDA should help them find a cheaper parcel of land to build on. We're sitting out here in the middle of a bunch of cornfields, for cryin' out loud--there must be something cheap enough that would make their plan workable. Rezoning might be required, but that wouldn't be the end of the world, either.

  • College Student posted at 10:50 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    If Chris Brown is "passionate" about bringing an eight-screen movie theater to Northfield

    THEN his father Paul Brown say...

    “Without assistance from the city of Northfield and possibly Rice County, we won’t be able to bring a theater to Northfield that it deserves,” Paul Brown said. “If we can’t, we have a couple of other communities we are looking at.”

    I think it's disgusting they are asking for government money for when they are building a for profit business! Why should public funds be supplied to pay for about 10% of the building costs!

    If you can't build a theater with your own money and expect to be able to make ends meet and make a profit enough to justify doing the work and the risk then you have no business in this town!

    We'll survive with our big screen tv's from Walmart or Best Buy and stream movies via Netflicks it's cheaper in the long run PLUS it doesn't cost government funds too!

  • College Student posted at 10:42 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    College Student Posts: 223

    Let's not forget that Fairabult and Lakeville already have existing theaters... Not sure what other towns you mean maybe Dundas? yea I'm sure we will pull in people from there all TWELVE of them! [beam]

  • Ofsilence posted at 8:33 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    Ofsilence Posts: 818

    "This is the kinda thing that irritates me. Either Give me assistance or we'll find someone else to do it. Really? That statement seems pretty pathetic to say to a community you want to build a movie theater in. "

    This is a direct consequence of government giving handouts to businesses.....also known as corporate welfare. Sure, the comments made are irritating but they are true. If Northfield passes on this theater than another community will step up and pay the required price. That's how the current business environment works. And can you blame them? Most of the time these businesses are successful in extracting money from governments and its one more way for them to increase their profits. If government is so stupid to play along like they do.....than who is to blame?

  • Ofsilence posted at 8:27 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    Ofsilence Posts: 818

    True. But the very very sad reality of the situation is that corporate welfare is here to stay. If one city doesnt want to throw money at a business then there's plenty of others lined up to do it. Until most cities say "No, we're not giving you any corporate welfare" than this practice will continue and businesses will expect some kind of subsidy from government to build a business. This is the direct consequence of having too much government involved in the private markets. It's a very slippery slope.

  • Soitgoes posted at 7:55 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    Soitgoes Posts: 1053

    It doesn't sound like Northfield was able, or willing, to support a movie theater in the past, why would it make business sense to open another one? Especially if you're NOT targeting the college student?

    Taxpayer's money aside, this isn't sound business sense. Throw taxpayer's money into the mix and everyone of your city officials should be voted out of office.

  • steakholder posted at 7:49 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    steakholder Posts: 1761

    I'd like to see a new theater in town. I'd probably go to more movies if I didn't have to drive to Lakeville.

    The reality of life is that new businesses still expect to get some sort of incentive to open up, and they use the threat of going somewhere else as leverage.

    Everyone seems to forget that a few years ago, the EDA gave the Archer House a $100,000 forgivable loan. So we essentially GAVE Brett Reese $100,000. Right in his pocket. I didn't hear a whole lot of complaining.

    We didn't get anything for it. We didn't get a new business moving to town, we didn't get more jobs, we didn't increase our tax base, we didn't attract more visitors. Nothing, nada, zip, zero, bupkis.

    That's what really frosts me about the EDA is that we waste money like that, when we could/should be using it to attract new businesses, create jobs, and increase the tax base, and possibly bring more people into town.

    So they want $30,000 a year for 10 years. Not to bad. If they close, they don't get any more money. Then they want a revolving loan. Alright, they have to pay that back right?

    I was looking at the EDA micro loans we give out. Heck, we're just giving away that much every year to businesses downtown. We give businesses money for a new freezer, or to have more of an on line prescence, or whatever.

    Again, the EDA should be focusing on economic development. The money they give should be creating development and jobs and growth. When you give a downtown business like the hideaway money for a new freezer, it doesn't create any new jobs, it doesn't attract more visitors or increase the tax base.

    No new businesses, no new jobs, it's just cash in the owner's pockets. It's a subsidy for a downtown business.

    We give the NDDC $30,000 a year. For what? To run taste of Northfield and lobby the city council to give more money to existing downtown businesses?

    Don't forget, we've been giving the NDDC "start up" or "seed" money now for something like 12 years. Which raises another good point.

    We should be helping groups like the NDDC get started. We should help new businesses get started. However, we shouldn't be in the business of just providing long term operating funds to groups like the NDDC or to businesses just to help them stay open.

    Maybe we should offer the theater $30k a year for 5 years. If they can't make it by then, they're not going to.

    So let's take the $30,000 we would give to the NDDC next year, and give it to the movie theater!

    By the way, you watch, the NDDC will never come out in support of this project, even though it's infill, which they say we should focus on, because they'll be afraid it will hurt downtown, even though it's good for Northfield. You'll never hear a word from them.

    I think when you look at the other ways that we spend $30,000 on every year, here and there, $30,000 a year is kind of a drop in the bucket, and at least if the business works, we get something for it, instead of just pouring into the downtown drain.

    Lastly, everyone thinks Northfield is a joke, a laughing stock, because of how our council and planning commissions behave. Everyone will be watching this. If we screw it up, and jerk these people around like we jerked David Hvistendahl around, and take forever to make decisions, I think it's going to scare away a lot of future businesses.

    This is the first time in a while that we have a chance to attract a new, exciting, significant business to town. Let's not screw it up.

    At the same time, let's make sure the property owner is chipping in, and let's make sure he isn't a member of the EDA, and voting to benefit himself.

  • ftguy posted at 2:52 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    ftguy Posts: 126

    I agree with MR. Z, start small and you can always go bigger. I have been looking for someplace local to take my family since the theater in Faribo closed down, and the drive to Northfield wouldn't be that bad. Hope they come into town, but on a smaller scale, without taxpayer funds!

  • MrZ posted at 7:55 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    MrZ Posts: 25

    “Without assistance from the city of Northfield and possibly Rice County, we won’t be able to bring a theater to Northfield that it deserves,” Paul Brown said. “If we can’t, we have a couple of other communities we are looking at. We feel Northfield is a good fit, though.”

    This is the kinda thing that irritates me. Either Give me assistance or we'll find someone else to do it. Really? That statement seems pretty pathetic to say to a community you want to build a movie theater in.

    How this for an idea... Instead of an 8plex try starting with a 4plex, that should cut your cost in half. I could see the community standing behind that more. You can always add on to the theater if it seems feasible in the future. But to out right start with that huge of a complex, not worth it.

    Are they thinking they will beable to pull that much from the surrounding areas that it might be feasible? I don't like the fact that they want taxpayer money and incentives to build it. How many business have started up in Northfield and requested taxpayer money and incentives and show up front that it will probly be a losing business in the long run? I am all for having a theater in town, but to go that Big and expect taxpayers to help you that much is kinda ridiculous. Northfield needs jobs that is one thing I do agree on, but how many jobs is it gonna bring, and How many of these jobs will actually be local hires? Just parttime is my thoughts. with I bet less then 20 people, Who will mostly be HS kids. That doesn't help the rest of the area who are always looking for jobs.

    Still my advice to these guys would be... Start smaller and grow your business locally, before going so big. Wish the best of luck, But I sure hope my taxpaying dollars will not foot any of this.

  • obicera posted at 7:13 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    obicera Posts: 403

    So long as they use real butter on the popcorn.

  • whatever posted at 5:18 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    whatever Posts: 402

    I have to agree with hopeful. The old theatre on Hwy 3 was always dirty. Sticky floors etc.

  • Hopeful posted at 4:34 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    Hopeful Posts: 257


    I think the difference here is that the old movie theater was rundown and quite frankly it needed to go away. What is being proposed is a new, state-of-the-art movie theater. I believe that not only will people from Northfield support it but people from neighboring towns will support it.

    Would it be great if they could do it without taxpayer money, yes. Is it unrealistic to ask for some support is getting the project off the ground, no!

  • DrNo posted at 3:33 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    DrNo Posts: 128

    I'm not sure what good it is for the city to be on the hook for another movie theatre, which the community hasn't supported in the past. It's pretty clear they see they can't make money with this venture, so keep taxpayer money out of it.


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