Cinemark at Norfolk's Military Circle Mall permanently closes as city works to redevelop area

Cinemark 18
Posted at 10:55 PM, Feb 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-16 23:10:15-05

NORFOLK, Va. - Another movie theater in Hampton Roads has shut its doors for good.

People who live in Norfolk and surrounding areas say the announcement is shocking and "hurts."

In a statement to News 3, a spokesperson with Cinemark says, "Cinemark can confirm that it has permanently closed its Cinemark 18 theater in Norfolk, Virginia. This closure is normal course of business and the result of the careful and ongoing review of our theatre fleet, particularly in light of the impact of COVID-19."

The movie theater, which is located at Military Circle Mall, is owned by the City of Norfolk's Economic Development Authority.

The EDA purchased the mall last year for $11 million. At the moment, the city is working to redevelop the area.

The redevelopment is a multi-step process.

The city is currently reviewing proposals from teams interested in the redevelopment project, including design, construction, ownership and financing. Music mogul and Virginia Beach native Pharrell Williams is among the groups selected to be a part of this project.

In the end, the city says the project will include a walkable neighborhood, inclusivity and a sustainable mixed-use community.

A Norfolk city leader tells News 3, "Cinemark did not advise the Economic Development Authority of its plans to permanently close."