The Paradise Theater building, in West Allis, has been sold to a church that is starting work to transform the former cinema into a sanctuary.
Paradise LLC has sold the 31,600-square-foot building, at 6217-6301 W. Greenfield Ave., to Epikos Church for $62,500, said Adam Matson, of NAI MLG Commercial, who represented Epikos.
Brian Parrish, of Dickman Co. represented Paradise LLC, an investors group led by Courtney Hollis, wife of Jay Hollis, former owner of Rosebud Cinema Drafthouse.
Church officials previously outlined plans to make the former theater a second location for Epikos, now located at 2308 E. Belleview Place. The church has nearly 500 members, some of whom live in West Allis and other areas on Milwaukee's west side.
The restoration, including a new roof, new windows and new mechanical systems, will cost an estimated $2.2 million, said Epikos Pastor Danny Parmelee. He said the church is embarking on a fundraising campaign, and has been contacting lenders to help finance the project.
The church hopes to begin renovations this summer, with completion by summer of next year, Parmelee said.
The 1929 building has stood vacant for two years since a previous church group moved out, and the building went through foreclosure. The theater shut down in 1996.
City building inspectors had ordered the previous owner to make major structural repairs to avoid a demolition order.
The plans by Epikos Church to restore the building can be found at a website, restoreparadise.com.