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Council gives PBK another chance to build movie theater

WORTHINGTON -- The Worthington City Council on Monday approved a new purchase agreement with PBK Investments to build a movie theater on property off of U.S. 59 and Bioscience Drive.

WORTHINGTON - The Worthington City Council on Monday approved a new purchase agreement with PBK Investments to build a movie theater on property off of U.S. 59 and Bioscience Drive.

 

PBK must have the plans for the theater submitted before the closing deadline of Dec. 1, 2017. The previous agreement was terminated, as PBK failed to close on or before June 1, 2017.

 

PBK’s original ask was for an April 1, 2018 deadline, but it was voted down 3-2, with council members Amy Ernst, Mike Harmon and mayor pro tem Larry Janssen siding against. Mayor Mike Kuhle missed the meeting, as he is in Germany to mark Worthington and Crailsheim’s sister city relationship.

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Ernst showed opposition to a spring date, as she said another party has reached out to the city about building a theater.

 

“If people think that you guys are going to put a movie theater in, nobody else is going to look, but how do we know how long this is going to go on?” Ernst said. “Let’s move it forward if you’re really interested in doing it.”

 

Harmon expressed a lack of confidence in PBK, citing the unsuccessful mall redevelopment project and delays on the theater as a “lack of performance.”

 

Kevin Donovan, a partner with PBK on the project, told council members he was confident the project would get done.

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“I can assure you my goal is to get it up and running tomorrow,” Donovan said. “We’ve already invested quite a bit of money, so the longer we let it go, the more money it’s costing us.”


Donovan said he was fine with the new deadline. He said the theater could be up by next spring, as Fullerton Building Systems will build the theater during the winter and is capable of putting together such a structure in a week.

“I don’t think another company can come in and put in another theater quicker than us,” Donovan said.

Council members hinted that PBK had to hit the deadline, or the city would look elsewhere for a developer.


“We’d like to see something from [PBK] by then,” Ernst said. “They have to, or don’t come back.”

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