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Salinas Fox Theater reopens after shutting down for months

The Fox Theater in downtown Salinas is back open for business after having been closed for over four months.

The City of Salinas forced the theater to close back in April because of what they say were several health and safety code violations, all of which the owner of the theater says have been resolved.

“It means that I can go on with my life. It means that the theater can reopen to the public and to all the wonderful people of Salinas. It means my staff can go back to work,” said Anthony Lane, the owner of Fox Theater. “It means a lot of things. It’s an amazing moment.”

Lane said some of the issues brought up include the sprinkler system, which has been updated now. Another issues involves an old un-reinforced masonry wall. The city contends this wall is load bearing and could be problematic during a natural disaster event like an earthquake.

Fox Theater’s structural engineer disagrees, but they went along with the city anyway.

“They had to put this 48 foot by 32 foot tall steel structure in between, so it took a lot of work,” said Lane.

He says his workers averaged 40 to 70 hours a week for the renovations, having to wait for plan checks with the city. He says he is not happy with how the city handled things.

“When something does happen or they do find something, I think they should handle it differently and work with the business owner than to put in so many roadblocks in front of them,” said Lane. “So it was a very tough endeavor for me.”

At the end of the day, however, it is all about bringing entertainment back to downtown Salinas.

“It’s just a great feeling to survive this wonderful building, it’s a gem. I mean, there’s not very many buildings like this, and I’m a very proud owner of a gem of a building in Salinas,” said Lane.

He says they will have a party on Sunday at the theater to thank everyone who supported him. And he is already trying to book performers for every weekend until the end of the year for the rest of the community.

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KION546 News Team


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