Mayor: Cinemark will reopen Century Aurora 16 theater, site of shooting rampage

Cinemark sent Mayor Hogan a letter

AURORA, Colo. - Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan confirms plans to reopen the Aurora Century 16 theater, site of the shooting rampage on July 20.

James Holmes is suspected of killing 12 and injuring 58 others on during a midnight screening of the latest Batman movie. Holmes was arrested behind the theater and has since appeared in court for a variety of hearings.

Before this decision, the city of Aurora collected comments about ideas for the future of the theater. City spokeswoman Lori MacKenzie told 7NEWS that those comments were sent to Cinemark for review.

Cinemark sent Mayor Hogan a letter announcing their intention to reopen. The letter is dated Sept. 20, and was signed by President and CEO Tim Warner.

"It will be our privilege to re-open the theater. We pledge to reconfigure the space and make the theater better than ever," Warner's letter said.

Cinemark said they hope the reopening will happen before the beginning of 2013.

"We look forward to working with you about the best way to re-open the theater," the letter said.

Mayor Hogan sent this statement about the reopening of the theater:

"I am pleased the victims, families of the victims, our community and others had a chance to share their thoughts and feelings concerning the future of the theater.  The responses indicate overwhelming support to reopen the theater with renovations.  The theater has been a valued part of our community for many years, and just as they have been all along, I am confident Cinemark will continue to remain sensitive to victims, their families, their employees and our community throughout their process of remodeling and reopening.

"We will always remember those who lost their lives and the many others impacted that day.  While no one will ever forget that day, this is another step in the community’s healing."

"It's almost like stepping on a grave," said Mike White Sr., who is against the reopening.

"I think it should be torn down because it just hurts so much to drive past it," said Paula Adams a shooting survivor.

"One person shouldn't ruin it for everyone else, " said 16-year-old survivor Catherine Streib.  She said she's glad it's reopening.

7NEWS also learned Friday that two lawsuits against Cinemark were filed in federal court by attorneys working on behalf of three victims.

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