The Cinema Theatre is proposed to be located in a commercial hub of grain market in Patiala. The master plan of the market provides for a very small plot of 125‘x 120‘for the purpose. It was a gigantic task to design a cinema theatre on such a small site. The evolved design provides for 572-seat cinema hall having 396 seats at lower auditorium level and 176 seats at the upper balcony. Apart from this, all the mandatory requirements of a cinema have been fully catered to. These include ticket-booking counters, public verandahs, canteen, toilets, foyers at three levels, office space and projection rooms.
The cinema theatre block has been conceived primarily as a massive cubical block in exposed brick work with some punctuations here and there to add grandeur to the structure. These punctuations include recessed public verandahs at ground floor, an independent staircase block for ingress and aggress, advertisement panel, deep recessed fenestrations etc. Apart from these, most striking features of the design are some curved and jutting out masses from the cuboid. These projecting masses add to the spaciousness of the foyers inside at different levels and create an interesting pattern on the otherwise blank façade. The clerestory windows which separate these masses lit the foyers in a dramatic way.
The peculiar situation vis-à-vis size of plot led to many unusual solutions to evolve a suitable design. Due to restrictions in length of block, the auditorium has to be adjusted between end- to-end walls. As a result, the foyers have to be juxtaposed along the side wall of the auditorium instead of back wall as is usually done. Likewise projection-room floor has to be adjusted in between auditorium and balcony levels. The linear strip of space accommodating foyers, offices and toilets has been placed on the front side facing parking for easy ingress and aggress. This unit has been designed in split levels for easy approach to auditorium and balcony.
The building is a bold statement of “modern regionalism” justifying the inherent qualities of building materials, expressiveness of structure, and functional relevance of form and features. The external expression of the building in exposed brick face (with locally available bricks) makes it belong to the region. To meet the demand of large span and height, reinforced concrete columns and beams, steel trusses, rafters and purlins have been incorporated in the structure. But these have been camouflaged in brick cladding which give the structure a bold and monochromatic expression.