Atascadero residents invited to groundbreaking celebration of Colony Square project

More than 100 city employees and community leaders turned out Monday for the official groundbreaking of the long-awaited Colony Square project.

Developers Jim Harrison and Peter Hilf said the groundbreaking marks the beginning of construction on the 10-screen movie theater slated to anchor the development in downtown Atascadero.

Harrison and Hilf said they hope to have the theater finished in late 2010.

A community celebration of the groundbreaking is scheduled for 5 p.m. today at the project site. It is expected to include hot dogs, popcorn and movie characters before a screening of the 1981 film “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” City leaders have promoted Colony Square for years, saying it will be a key player in revitalizing the downtown area.

— AnnMarie Cornejo