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Playpen Demolition Would Be Blight on Civilization

As far as we know, the Playpen Theater is still standing. (What, you want us to tread through Times Square?) But for how long, we cannot say. Impending demise at the hands of developer Tishman hasn't put a damper on the efforts of the Committee To Save The Playpen Theater, however, which the Historic Districts Council points out has set up an online petition to save the old Beaux Arts gay porn palace. The petition currently has 143 signatures, and some of the signees have left some passionate comments that are worth sharing. And share, we shall. Let's see what transpires when you rile up some theater geeks.

#141: "Don't turn 8th Avenue into a row of giant towers at the expense of original New York architecture and history. We don't want to live in a concrete jungle."

#126: "This historic theatre building MUST be conserved. Stand back and take a good look at the current Marquis Theatre building on Times Square and think hard about what was destroyed in 1983 to build 'That' monstrosity. If you can't remember, I will remind you that 5 historic theatres (Morosco, Bijou, Astor, Follies-Bergere and Gayety) all bit the dust in the name of progress to build a so called 'modern' theatre and yet another overpriced hotel."

#59: "If the facade were saved, and the interior either renovated or rebuilt (depending on the interior architectural elements which remain), it would be one of the most sought-after Off-Broadway Theatres (profit or non-profit) or one of the most Intimate Broadway Theatres (as sought after as the Helen Hayes is, they would be a unique two of a kind on Broadway)."

#42: "A bit of New York's political history would go with it. When it showed Russian films, during the Red Scare, only a few committed Leftists were brave enough to go, because the FBI had cameras in an office across the street, recording those who attended."

And our favorite, in true dramatic fashion:

#13: "Our theatres, like our historic buildings and neighborhoods, are part of our civilization. It's important we don't lose them. Especially now when our civilization is threatened."
· Save the Playpen Theater [petitiononline.com]
· Group Rallies to Spare Seedy Eighth Avenue Theater [Curbed]