As mentioned this morning, developers in Provo are planning a new six-story mixed-use building downtown. The structure will go in at 63 E. Center St.
Years ago, however, that same space was occupied by the Paramount Theater. Though I struggled to find images of the building, I did find someone named G. Hamilton Hill saying that in the 1960s it was still around. This website also claims that it operated from roughly 1930 to 1980. However, I have not confirmed either of those statements.
The picture below is the clearest image I located. It comes from the Provo Library’s online archives.
The next picture (below) shows the same area roughly 16 years earlier. It was taken looking toward the northeast. The one-story building in the image is where Guru’s is located today.
And finally, the motley bunch in the picture below is standing in front of the same general area sometime between 1890 and 1900. This picture also was taken looking northeast.
It’s worth nothing that the trees behind this “family” — who look a lot more like a band of horse thieves to me — would eventually be replaced by a police station and city building that would itself be demolished later to make way for a grassy area. Most recently, that spot was used last weekend for the Festival Latinoamericano.
In any case, unfortunately none of these pictures shows 63 E. Center St. very clearly. I actually spent several hours combing through different photo archives, but with no more luck.
And though the Paramount Theater is long gone and replaced by a parking lot, the documents I cited in this morning’s post indicate that remnants of the building actually survive. Specifically, the documents mention the removal of the building’s foundation, which suggests that even though the building was demolished someone just paved over its base.