Out with the old: Former Belk store gets demolished to make way for the new theater
By Robert Norris (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The last bricks that covered the exterior of the former Belk store on the east side of Foothills Mall came tumbling down Thursday.
Demolition of the structure, originally a Proffitt’s store, clears the way for construction of a state-of-the-art Carmike Cinemas multiplex with more than 2,300 seats expected to open in early 2012.
The 45,000-square-foot theater will feature 12 screens with stadium seating, digital surround sound and high-back plush rockers. The theater will include a large-format digital experience, with bigger screens, bigger sound and bigger, more luxurious seats.
The Columbus, Ga.-based theater chain describes its new multiplex, dubbed “The BIG-D,” as a totally redesigned premium auditorium that includes a wall-to-wall screen measuring 78 feet wide and over three stories tall, the latest in 7.1 digital surround sound and digital projection for both 2-D and 3-D features.
In technical terms, Carmike’s BIG-D digital experience is powered by a cutting-edge Christie Brilliant 3-D flash projector. Images are projected onto the colossal wall-to-wall, ceiling-to-floor screen. The end result is a light output of 30,000 lumens, creating a picture quality with noticeably higher resolution than HD.
To further enhance the experience, the custom QSC digital audio system is tuned to a 7.1 speaker array with eight discrete channels and the ability to upgrade to 11.1, a revolution in surround sound technology with digital audio processing supported by quad-amplified, four-way speakers and six 21-inch subwoofers.
The owner of Foothills Mall, CBL & Associates Properties Inc., of Chattanooga, expects the new theater to draw more customers and help support existing and future retailers in the mall.
The Economic Development Board of the Blount Partnership authorized in March a lease agreement between the board and FHM Anchor LLC. The city of Maryville requested the agreement that includes a tax abatement to facilitate the $6 million project.