Bedford Playhouse officers announced that the nonprofit organization has reached its 2016 fundraising goal of $5.2 million to save and renovate the building at 633 Old Post Road as a theater complex and community center .
However, playhouse officials said, additional asbestos was uncovered in the building and must be removed before the town of Bedford will approve the start of construction work.
Since the winter of 2015, nearly 1,200 area residents have come together to raise funds and prevent the Bedford Playhouse from being converted into retail space, according to organizers. Bedford Playhouse Inc., a nonprofit group founded by John Farr, plans to build a three-screen theater complex s
howing documentaries, first-run features, art house films and classic movies; a street-level café serving prepared foods as well as wine and beer to both the public and moviegoers, and create more than 50 additional parking spaces dedicated to the playhouse. The playhouse will also serve as a venue for special events and educational programming.
Opened in 1947, the former two-screen theater was acquired by New York City-based developer Alchemy Properties in 2013. After the theater’s tenant, Ridgefield-based Bow Tie Cinemas, chose not to renew its lease in January 2015, Alchemy Properties explored converting the Bedford Playhouse into a retail space. To halt those plans, a deal was struck between Alchemy and Bedford Playhouse Inc.
For more information, visit bedfordplayhouse.org.