Shops to rise from Lynnwood theater site

LYNNWOOD — The Lynn Theatre opened in 1963 to a double billing of a Bob Hope and Lucille Ball comedy called “Critic’s Choice” followed by a Glenn Ford movie called “Love is a Ball.”

The movie theater at Highway 99 south of 196th Avenue soon added a second screen and became the LynnTwin Theater. Eventually, it became the Lynn 4 Theatre, according to cinematreasures.org.

It shut down in the mid-1980s, but continued be used as a warehouse by the nonprofit World Concern, a Christian humanitarian organization that helps developing countries.

This week, the old movie theater is being torn down to make way for a new retail development.

Roberston &Olsen Construction is doing the demolition and clearing the ground for retail shops and an L.A. Fitness facility. Construction on the project is expected to begin in February or March, said Laron Livsey, superintendent of the project for the company.

The 12.5 acres at the site is owned by the Bellevue-based Sterling Realty Organization. That company, formerly named the Sterling Recreation Organization, owned and operated the movie theaters.

In 1986, SRO sold its theater operations, while retaining most of the real estate, according to the company’s website.

Mike Lancaster, property construction manager, said the new development will be called Lynnwood Crossroads. He declined to say how much the project will cost.

“Once they clear it, it’s really going to clean it up,” Lancaster said. “It’ll be a nice development.”

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