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Queens Chronicle

Landmark the Midway

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Posted: Thursday, March 27, 2014 10:30 am

Dear Editor:

(An open letter to VFW-American Legion veterans)

In 1942 a movie house designed by Thomas Lamb, America’s foremost theater architect, was constructed on Queens Boulevard in Forest Hills. At the same time, in the Pacific Ocean, a historic naval battled called the Battle of Midway (June 3-6) resulted in the first major defeat of Japanese naval forces. This American victory checked Japan’s advance across the Central Pacific, eliminated the threat to Hawaii and restored the balance of naval power in the Pacific.

The news of this heroic naval victory electrified the spirit of war-weary America. The owners of this new theater were so proud, they displayed their patriotism by naming their theater Midway.

It is now feared that the current owners (three real estate investors) will demolish the building for a possible high-rise structure. The Rego Forest Preservation Council and the Queens Preservation Council appealed to the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission to declare the Midway a New York City landmark. However, their appeal was denied.

This concerned writer is urging all veterans to write to the commission and urge their members to reconsider their decision. Letters should be sent to: Chairman Robert B. Tierney, New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, 1 Centre St., (9th floor north), NY, NY 10007.

We should not lose the historical association and architectural significance of this treasure.

Anthony G. Pilla
Forest Hills

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