Riverfront Park IMAX demolition begins Monday

Riverfront Park IMAX TheatreThe IMAX building, part of the Pavilion redevelopment currently underway, was slated to be demolished in March. However, the City of Spokane says the schedule is moving up several weeks to utilize heavy demolition equipment already on site. IMAX demolition is now scheduled to begin Monday, Jan. 29.


The first phase of IMAX demolition will involve a high reach excavator and remove the top 25-30’. It is anticipated to take most of the week. Later, smaller excavators will be used to remove the remainder of the building.  

Demolition will also remove other items not part of the original Expo ’74 Pavilion, including the Ice Palace roof and science building. The cable net structure from Expo ’74 will remain in place. 


January 29 - Pavilion

Fencing will expand around the Pavilion and Central Promenade on Havermale Island. The fencing is anticipated to remain until summer 2019.

February 5 – North Promenade

Fencing is scheduled to surround the North Promenade, closing the Howard Street Promenade pedestrian bridges. Detour routes through the park will take visitors either across the suspension bridges or the Washington Street bridge. Construction on the North Promenade is anticipated to be complete in fall 2018.

For a map of detour routes, click here

Late Spring 2018 - Carrousel

The Looff Carrousel, Howard Street South Channel Bridge, and Rotary Fountain are anticipated to open to the public in spring, creating greater access along Spokane Falls Blvd.

IMAX history

The IMAX opened in 1978, four years after Expo ’74, at a cost of about $1 million. A 30-year contract with IMAX giving the City exclusive rights to IMAX films in the region expired in 2008. The right to first-run IMAX movies also ended and shifted to another theater.

By 2012, the IMAX was no longer financially viable with a loss of about $165,000. It was removed from the future of the Pavilion site in the 2014 Master Plan through a robust public process with community input.

Pavilion & Promenade

A renovated Pavilion will be a flexible mixed-use event and gathering space, aimed at hosting everything from Hoopfest Center Court, Bloomsday awards, the Spokane Symphony and other concerts, graduations, recreation activities, art events, cultural gatherings, and festivals. It focuses on being the lantern of the community through illuminating the cable net structure, and a connection to the roaring falls and one another. To view the design concepts, click here.

The Promenade is designed to draw people into and through the park in a well-lit, expanded walkway. It aims to be a strong architectural and visual connection through the park and to points of historical and visual interest. To view the design images, click here

The new Pavilion and full Promenade are anticipated to open summer 2019.

The Pavilion and Promenade renovations are two of the five bond projects for the redevelopment of Riverfront Park. Redevelopment details are at www.riverfrontparknow.com.

(story and photo: KHQ.com)

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