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Last drive-in theater in metro Denver fights to stay open

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — City leaders indicate they have no plans to ‘shut-down’ the iconic drive-in which has operated on 88th and Rosemary in Commerce City for more than 40 years.

“The city police chief told me that I was responsible for monitoring the way people drive and where they wait to get into the drive-in,” said Susan Kochevar who owns the movie theater. “I only want the city to fix the roads and to help ensure motorists waiting to get in, don’t break laws or compromise safety.”

At Monday’s council meeting, Kochevar presented 10,000 signatures of folks who support the outdoor theatre. Many question Police Chief Troy Smith, who sent a letter to Kochevar demanding she take control of a “traffic dilemma” he believes to be caused by her drive-in. Kochevar says traffic has never been a problem in the past and wonders why the chief is putting demands on her which she says could close her facility.

“More than 60,000 head out here each year to watch first-run films from the comfort of their vehicles,” said Kochevar. “We bring people here who spend money in the city and act friendly—causing few problems while at the movies.”

The city stands ready to work out issues as does Kochevar. Both say the drive-in is good for the city and hope the roads can be widened, more signage will be put up to keep traffic flowing and folks will keep calm while ‘chiving on’ for the rest of the summer.

Next meeting is this week between both sides.