Proposals for Chateau Theatre

February 18, 2019 07:11 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- Construction on the Chateau Theatre in downtown Rochester is moving along with just months left to the finish line. 
As curiosity grows over what the final product will look like, there's been a lot of interest from groups hoping to occupy the historic building.

“Really the Chateau is the heart of the city,” said Mark Bilderback, the City Council representative for Ward 4 (which is where the Chateau is located). “It was a gathering place. It was something that drew people to it and I hope, whatever happens, it can still be a building that draws the people to it.”

Five proposals have been submitted to the City.

“We want to bring fun and laughter back to this great old building,” said Paul Sims.

Sims is an Architect at Mayo Clinic. He and his business partners, Breanna Holtan and Ross Henderson, want to turn the building into an Arcade.

“The Destination Medical Center has drawn so many people and has had so much success here in the Downtown,” said Sims, “but many people feel like it's missing one important element … and that is the kids.”

Sims' vision includes a mix of both classic and new arcade games, as well as milk and cookies for the children.

However, the Director of Threshold Arts has different hopes for the space. After recently opening Castle Community in Rochester, Naura Anderson is ready for a new project.

“There would likely be some similarities [to the Community Castle] but our plan or our proposal is really about the programming of that space,” said Anderson. “A space where we are activating it with events; whether that be music of private rentals.”

Arts Trust Minnesota is a non-profit wants to use the space as a hub for arts and culture.

The other two proposals come from groups in the Twin Cities. Exhibit Development Group brings science and art exhibits to communities. Entourage Events Group is an event management company. 

“I'm glad we are at this point finally,” said Bilderback. “It gives us some more opportunity and it should gather some more energy as people are looking forward to see what happens.”

Proposals will be reviewed by city officials and DMC EDA staff before going before the City Council. Bilderback estimates that part of the process could take several months.


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