Could the old Country Market grocery store be home to a new movie theater?
Mlive reported Emagine Theatre will open a location in Saline. The article reports that Emagine Theater will fill a vacated grocery store.
In Saline, the only vacated grocery store is the former Country Market which closed in June of 2012.
The vacant space is located in the Commons at Sauk Trail at Michigan Avenue and Industrial Drive. In December of 2014, AF Jonna purchased the deteriorating shopping plaza for $4.3 million at a bankruptcy sale. In that time there had been talks about using the Country Market space as an indoor sports facility or as a church.
Katie Spence, who with her husband Jeff owns Mancino’s Pizza and Grinders in that same shopping plaza, would be thrilled to see an Emagine Entertainment theater in that space.
“Mancino's would be thrilled to have the space in our complex filled with an Emagine Theatre. Not only would it be great for the businesses in our complex, it would give our citizens another great place to spend their time and dollars,” Spence said. “My family loves the movies and we wouldn’t need to travel to Carpenter or Jackson Road to catch a movie on the big screen.”
Terri Sibo-Koenig, of the Saline Area Chamber of Commerce, said such a development would be great for the community.
“We’re always looking for entertainment venues for people in this community so they don’t have to leave town,” Sibo-Koening said.
She said that businesses in Commons at Sauk plaza stand to benefit.
“We have members (of the chamber) in that plaza. Having that vacant for so long has been hard on them. So this would be great for them,” Sibo-Koenig said.
Emagine Entertaiment has 80 screens in nine theatres in Michigan, with the nearest on Ford Road in Canton Township. Emangine Entertainment bills itself as a “luxury theatre” company. It has been at the forefront of movie theatre technology.
CEO Paul Glantz was on an airplane Friday morning and could not be reached for comment.
Saline has been without a movie house for decades. In 1938, Wesley Gilpin and Lewis Lash opened the Saline Theatre at what is now Benny’s Bakery.