Eight million dollars seems like a lot of money for where the Sag Harbor Cinema lobby stood until it was destroyed in fire in December. However, the sum a civic group has pledged to buy the site and the relatively unscathed theater behind it and eventually build a new cultural center will prove well worth it in the long run.
In a deal announced this week, the Sag Harbor Partnership intends to raise what is needed to buy the property and continue and expand on the cinema’s reputation as a place to see smaller, art films by also offering educational programs. Conceptual plans call for two theaters as well as a screening room-classroom on the second floor.
With uncertainty about the Bay Street Theater’s long-term lease on Long Wharf, Sag Harbor and the surrounding communities should be especially eager to support what could be a new and vital cultural asset.