The non-profit Pikesville Cultural Arts Foundation wants to spend $300,000 to renovate the 55-year-old Pikes Theater into a cinema for foreign and classic films, and later raze the building to make way for a 400-seat performing arts center.
Even foundation officials admit it's a wacky idea. But their hope -- or Hollywoodesque fantasy -- is to raise almost $5 million so the arts center can open in about five years. When it does, the officials say, Baltimore County will have the region's best mid-sized facility for music and dance; suburbanites in search of culture won't have to venture downtown, and the anticipated crowds will give a boost to Pikesville's sagging business core.
Raising millions of dollars for an arts facility in this economy will prove a difficult job. Private individuals, banks and corporations are no longer as able to contribute as they were during the '80s.