Plans, permits reveal modifications made to Aurora Century 16 theater after movie shooting

AURORA, Colo. - Plans reveal many of the changes made to the movie theater where 12 people were killed and dozens were injured in a July shooting. The theater is preparing to reopen to the public this week.

The first change made to the Century 16 theater is the name. It is now called Century Aurora and a new sign reflects that title. The neon lights made famous during the early morning hours of July 20 have been replaced with a colorful mural depicting people, popcorn and film reels.

Elsewhere on the theater's exterior, cosmetic changes were made to the rear of the building. James Holmes was arrested at the rear of the building, near the emergency exit of theater 9, after allegedly opening fire in that auditorium.

Inside, plans show changes to the two theaters where people were shot. Although the plans label the theaters by letter, references make it clear which of the two were theaters 8 and 9.

Theater 9 is being replaced with an XD theater, a large movie projection format. The plans show the auditorium now has new carpets, drapery, 354 seats and a new screen.

Theater 8, where three people were also injured during the shooting, was remodeled to hold 381 seats.

Each of the other theaters were also given cosmetic upgrades, including new handrails, seats, and wall carpeting. Several accommodations for handicapped patrons were made throughout the 16 theaters.

The plans include three-dimensional renderings of the building's lobby, showing a centralized concession stand in a room with vaulted ceilings. The plans called for aesthetic features, like a star-shaped lighting fixture, to be removed. The game room and box office remain in the same locations.

A permit categorized under "life safety" includes specifications for the equipment that was installed in relation to the fire alarm system. The document shows projectors throughout the theater will be shut down and theater lighting would be turned on when an alarm is pulled.

Theater owner Cinemark has invited victims and their families to tour the facility Tuesday and Wednesday. The official reopening event, being called an evening of remembrance, is scheduled to be held Thursday.