Movie theater owner breaks ground in Wilmington

It’s only a matter of time when an empty lot at the riverfront in Wilmington will be transformed into a movie theater complex. 


Project leaders believe they will be able to get Penn Cinema Imax Theater up and running at 401 South Madison Street by November of this year. According to owner/operator Penn Ketchum, the $20-million Imax theater will feature 14 full stadium seating auditoriums and will be one of the first theaters in the country to bring 48-frames-per-second projection systems to make big screen movies a great experience.

“We are an independent theater with the quality and technology of the biggest and best theater chains but the customer service of a mom-and-pop theater,” said Ketchum. “We started Penn Cinema in our hometown of Lititz, PA, and we have strong connections to Wilmington. It’s like going from one hometown to another.”

The property that will house the theater sold for $2-million which was approved by the Riverfront Development Corporation board.  RDC officials expect the project to bring 70 full-time contruction jobs to the area and 700,000 moviegoers to Wilmington’s riverfront.

“The cinema complex will be a beautiful centerpiece of entertainment options at the Riverfront,” said RDC Executive Director Michael Purzycki.  “We are very excited to watch this traffic addition to the Riverfront evolve and thrive and prove yet again the value of investments in this vibrant portion of our region.”

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