Collins Road Theatres in northeast Cedar Rapids will be closed most of next week to install new seating in three of the five movie theaters as well as for additional remodeling.
Bruce Taylor, owner of the 10-year-old, second-run movie complex, said it will be closed from Monday, Feb. 10, through Thursday, Feb. 13. Taylor said certain shows also will be dropped on Sunday evening, Feb. 9, to get a head start on the changes.
The theater will reopen on Friday, Feb. 14.
Taylor said the three auditoriums slated for new seating will have fewer rows to provide at least four inches of extra leg room. He said seating in the remaining two theaters likely will be upgraded in the near future.
Taylor said the new two-tone seats, which have been displayed recently in the theater lobby, have a higher back that the old ones. He said the theater will provide booster seats for young children to help them see the movie screen.
Taylor said the remodeling also will include replacing wall fabric, painting and adding 7.1 sound. The latter system provides more "surround sound" than 5.1 sound by adding two speakers to the back wall of the auditorium with two more channels of audio.
The upgrades will include new digital processors to handle the 7.1 sound. Taylor said that will allow him to provide descriptive narration of movies for customers who are blind or visually impaired.
"We will use the same little radio receivers that we provide to our hearing-impaired customers," Taylor said. "We will plug the transmitter into a different output that provides descriptive narration of a movie."
Descriptive narration provides an audio description of what the characters are doing on the screen, visual elements such costumes and facial expressions, and any printed text.
Taylor said the remodeling project will cost around $100,000 to complete.
"Business has been good and we have been saving up for this," he said. "We will not be raising our ticket prices or the prices at our concession stand."Taylor said the last time he was forced to raise his prices occurred after an increase in the minimum wage.