NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The former Regal Cinema in Bellevue has been vacant for years.
In 2010, the theater on Highway 70 South was damaged during the historic flood. It’s been closed ever since.
“We did have a couple of bites early on and those didn’t pan out and we were actively in conversation with the property owner about what was going to come in here and all of a sudden this happened,” said District 22 Metro Council Member Sheri Weiner.
Soon though, the business will come back to life in the form of a gun business.
A group of local businessmen have purchased the building with plans to turn it into an indoor shooting range called Regal Range.
“We found this building. There was really nothing else that could be done with it. A solid structure, large property, somewhat isolated. It just fit the bill perfectly,” said Paul Jividen, one of the property owners.
Demolition is well underway inside the building.
The owners told News 2 Regal Range will be the largest operation of its kind in the area with 31 firing lanes, tactical training and safety classes and retail space to sell firearms and accessories.
“It’s in a community that is really revamping and growing and coming back,” said Jividen.
According to Weiner, the response from the community has been mostly positive but the plans have caused some concern.
“They hear guns and they’re not happy,” explained Weiner.
She pointed out that the business is not near a school or a church and it’s not in the middle of a neighborhood.
“At the end of the day it’s a private transaction. You have a private business entity that already had the zoning, the land use policy in place such that this is a permitted use and it’s their right,” Weiner told News 2.
The retail store will open in May. Regal Range should be fully operational by August.
The business expects to employ 30 people including full time and part-time workers.
During a news conference Thursday, Jividen announced a partnership with local investors, John Russell and David Tetzlaff.