The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

Patio Theater To Be Sold, But Not to Portage Theater Owner Eddie Carranza

 The owner of the Patio Theater put it up for sale more than a year ago for $2. 9 million.
The owner of the Patio Theater put it up for sale more than a year ago for $2. 9 million.
View Full Caption
Essex Realty Group

PORTAGE PARK — Portage Theater owner Eddie Carranza will not buy the Patio Theater, the broker handling the sale said Thursday.

Justin Weber, of Chicago-based Essex Realty Group, who is handling the sale, said Carranza "was not able to fulfill his obligations" under the contract, first reported by DNAinfo Chicago in February.

The 88-year-old former movie palace at 6008 W. Irving Park Road went up for sale in July 2014 for $2.9 million, three months after it closed because of a busted air conditioning system.

The 1,500-seat single-screen movie theater, 18 apartments above the theater and 11 street-level shops and offices were all up for sale.

The theater, which many see as the linchpin in efforts to revitalize the Irving Austin Business District, where business owners are trying to bring new life to the edge of western Portage Park, is under contract to another buyer, Weber said.

Weber declined to reveal the identity of the theater's new owner. The sale is expected to be complete later this month, he added.

The Patio was also closed from 2001 to 2010, when the previous owner raised more than $54,000 on Kickstarter to buy a new digital projector and reopened the theater to host regular shows.

The interior of the Randolph Wolff-designed theater was restored in 2011. The auditorium's ceiling features a replica of a night sky, complete with twinkling stars and moving clouds.

Since February, the Patio Theater and the Portage Theater have been managed by the same team led by Charlie Burns.

In addition, Carranza is no longer planning to sell the storefronts and apartments attached to the Portage Theater in the heart of the Six Corners Shopping District, Weber said. He had put them up for sale for $2.35 million, and acknowledged the property needs $1.26 million in renovations.

The eight storefronts are available to lease, and "one of the retail spaces is in negotiations with what will be an excellent local and established tenant," Weber said.

Carranza has repeatedly vowed to renovate in an effort to draw more shoppers to the area and complement the movies, shows and concerts at the Portage Theater.

In September, Carranza bought the Plum Tree National Golf Course in Woodstock, Weber said. The 268-acre property had been listed for sale at $1.5 million.

The Portage Theater Group was interested in the golf course about 70 miles outside Chicago because it was an underutilized property that could be used for shows and other events, Weber said.

"The goal is to develop a mix of outdoor activities to serve the local community while drawing people from the city who want to get outside and enjoy the beautiful natural setting," Weber said.

For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: