The Future of Portage Park Theater

The Portage Theater is  one of the few original operating movie houses in the City and is an extremely  rare and important institution that defines this area. The theater opened in
1920 and is one of Chicago’s oldest movie houses. In 2006, the Portage Theater
was restored to its original glory and serves as the Northwest side’s center
for independent film and cultural entertainment. One of the reasons we moved up
to the 6 corners area is its proximity to key cultural attractions such as the
Portage Theater and the immediate surrounding businesses. Although we are in no
way against the establishment of a new church, we feel that the repurposing of
the theater into a place of worship will diminish the cultural heart of the
community and potentially hinder the burgeoning businesses trying to benefit by
locating adjacent to the theater. Although the City is allowing the application
to consider the church use  as a special permit to move forward, the City has issued a preliminary landmark status to the building exterior and interior and further consideration will be given to its Marquee.  This ensures that the critical elements of the building will not be altered as is the case with several other theaters that the city has lost to redevelopment. As a new
business in the neighborhood we join the effort to save this building to
operate as it was intended to operate. To learn more how to help save the Portage
Theater visit its website and stay tuned for the next hearing:


  1. Betty says:

    I live in Portage Park. Of course we want to preserve our movie theater! Why in the world would we need a church moving into that location when the PP Chamber is trying to revitalize the “6 Corners” area with new restaurants and pubs? What a loss it would be if the “venue” of this historic landmark would change!

  2. admin says:

    Thanks for the comment- i love this theater- im really hoping this can get resolved

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