Demolition

Mid-City Lanes

Wagon Wheel Bowling Alley

Bowlerama, Stoney Creek

Building History:

In 1958, Lucky Strike Lanes opened, in 1968, it was taken over by Bowlerama. Since then, the bowling alley had been a thriving “go-to” destination for many families, bowling leagues and parties in the Stoney Creek area. It featured both 12 lanes of 5 Pin and 12 lanes of 10 Pin bowling. The property was purchased by a developer and will soon be family homes.

 

Project Summary:

At the time of demolition, the building was in a state of dis-repair. The elements and vandalism had taken its toll. A full assessment was done by both the Deconstruction and Demolition Teams. It was determined that the only salvage from the building would be the bowling lanes. The Deconstruction Team prepped the lanes for removal. The Demolition Team created a hole in the exterior wall for lane removal and worked in conjunction the Deconstruction Team to recover the lanes.

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Bowlerama Stoney Creek

Bob has bowled at Club 300 and

watched the PBA Televised Championships in 1992-1993.

Club 300

Fire at Plaza Lanes, Des Moines Iowa, U.S.A.

Plaza Lanes Property to be Sold, Neighborhood Hopes for New Development

 

DES MOINES, Iowa — The owner of a Des Moines bowling alley destroyed in a fire nearly two years ago has announced they will not rebuild and will sell the property instead.

Plaza Lanes Bowling Alley served as entertainment for Des Moines’ north side for decades, until it burned down on Dec. 18, 2017.

Owner Randy Thompson said he had hoped to rebuild, but the $6 million he got from the insurance company is not enough.

“The insurance proceeds did not dictate that number to rebuild. And anymore when you go to rebuild a bowling center, it’s not just your traditional bowling center; a traditional bowling center of just bowling. You got to have bowling, you got to have an arcade, you got to have redemption, virtual reality, laser tag and lots of games,” Thompson said.

Thompson said he would need about $10 million to rebuild it to be able to compete with other metro attractions.

“We hope that part or that eight acres that we have there going up for sale will be the next best thing besides Plaza Lanes for the area. I know the neighbors are sad to see it go,” Thompson said.

Charles Hill, a neighbor and vice president of the Douglas Avenue Coalition, said Plaza Lanes was much more than a bowling alley.

“I was a member of a bowling league here. It had a great restaurant. It was a place for people to come and congregate and communicate with people in government, people in the neighborhood, and we had a lot of community organizations that came and met here. It was fantastic place for people to come and we hope to see that be able to be continued in whatever gets put here,” Hill said.

Hill said now that the shock of losing Plaza Lanes has worn off, he hopes the community can welcome something new and exciting in its place.

“We’re looking for a good neighbor that’s going to come in and revitalize and lift up this neighborhood. Looking for something that’s going to help other businesses in the area maximize their value on their land and the rent they’re able to bring in and provide opportunities for the Des Moines residents that live on the north side is very important for us,” Hill said.

Dick Hoover's Lanes, Brunswick, Ohio, U.S.A.

Closed on May 17th, 2020

Candlewood Lanes, North Reading, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Homowack Lodge, New York, U.S.A.

Ohio, U.S.A.

All-Star Lanes, Scarborough, Ontario, Canada

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Bob bowled on his first       10-pin team between 1990 and 1997 at Newtonbrook Bowlerama.  Bob bowled on his Dad's team and also on the same team were Bob's 5-pin youth coach and his son.  That was amazing bowling with my youth coach.  Coach Doug and Bob's Dad helped Bob learn how to bowl 10-pin and 5-pin.  What a great team!

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NEWTONBROOK BOWLERAMA, NORTH YORK, ONTARIO, CANADA

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Bob bowled at
Thorncliffe Bowlerama
during his last years in
YBC.  He then returned to Thorncliffe to bowl in his first adult league.  Bob bowled here from 1982-1986 and from 1989-2005.

Thorncliffe Bowlerama, East York, Ontario, Canada

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Bob bowled and coached many tournaments at Bowlerama West.

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BOWLERAMA WEST, ETOBICOKE, ONTARIO, CANADA

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Bob bowled in many Master Tournaments at Sherwood Centre in Hamilton.  Bob has also coached YBC bowlers at this location.

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SHERWOOD LANES, HAMILTON, ONTARIO, CANADA

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Anonymous Bowling Alley, Gary, Indiana, USA

The moss growing on the plastic seats leads us to hazard a guess that this ex-bowlarama is slowly moldering away somewhere below the Mason-Dixon Line. Some small tags at the photog’s website, on the other hand, reveal the words “Gary” and “Indiana”

Not all abandoned bowling alleys are dim and desolate – a few aren’t dim at all, thanks to fortuitous lighting conditions and a little help from a strobelight-wielding photographer. Take the small, 6-lane bowling alley above. Once the source of much mirth and merriment on a now-shuttered military base, this cozy little alley closed around 1989.

Surprisingly much of the original equipment, the wood on the lanes, even the EXIT signs are intact and much as the last bowler (or staff member) last saw them. Note the characteristic turquoise blue color scheme – obviously the fave hue of alley designers in the Golden Age of Bowling!

Gary, Indiana, U.S.A.

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Another Anonymous Bowling Alley, Gary, Indiana, USA

Note the lovely shag carpet that – oh wait, that’s moss. Still, the contrast between the rich turquoise plastic seating and the bilious green moss that thrives in the dim, dank, damp interior of the alley does make for a classic post-apocalyptic tableau.

Gary, Indiana, U.S.A.

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Former Bömisches Brauhaus, Berlin, Germany

Berlin’s former Bömisches Brauhaus illustrates just how far an abandonment can fall before it’s completely unrecognizable. The 19th century brewery underwent conversion into a sports center that included facilities for basketball, football, and ten-pin bowling.

 

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Berlin, Germany

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Inazawa Grand Bowl, Japan

Fiesta Lanes Neon Sign

Documenting the decay of abandoned bowling alleys is cool, but upcycling them – or some parts thereof – is the bomb! Take Fiesta Lanes, a popular bowlarama in Upper Arlington, Ohio, demolished in favor of a small two-story strip mall. Though bowling balls succumbed to the wrecking ball, the office that now occupies the site must have harbored some fond memories of Fiesta Lanes… fond enough to have salvaged the alley’s iconic sign and install it in the hallway.

The sign’s candy colored neon letters shine a rainbow of light into the dark streets of this small Ohio college town, evoking a kinder, gentler time when an evening out at the bowling alley was, well, just swell.




 

Psychedelic Alley, Aichi Prefecture, Japan

The Inazawa Grand Bowl in Japan’s Aichi prefecture is the world’s largest, with 116 lanes. Maybe that’s why other bowling alleys in the Nagoya metro area aren’t doing so well. The abandoned alley above, judging from the groovy decor, dates back to the Summer of Love.

Abandoned bowling balls, or the nest of the Queen Alien? Anyone care to get close enough to find out for sure? Thought so – odd that this particular abandoned bowling alley is chock full of shoes, balls, pins and other assorted bowling accessories. You’d think they’d be worth something on the secondhand market 

 

Abandoned house with bowling alley inside . . .

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Old Rehab Center Bowling Alley, USA

Looks like this abandoned “Bo l g All y” could use a stint in rehab – conveniently, it’s located on the grounds of a rehab center. No telling if the center itself has been abandoned or just the bowling alley.

 

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Old Rehab Centre Bowling Alley, U.S.A.

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Anonymous Alley, San Francisco, California, USA

An abandoned bowling alley in the San Francisco area comes alive through some awesome lighting effects in these images taken in 2007 and 2008. The exact location of this Big Lebowski-esque bowling alley is unknown

Sadly, it seems this old alley was razed and a condo development now occupies its former site. Where once was heard the rolling thunder of ten-pin bowling balls and the ominous clicking of scattered pins on polished wood, now only the drab minutia of routine living lands softly on jaded ears.

 

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San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

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Starlite Lanes, Detroit, USA

Formerly the Duke Theater (named for legendary jazz pianist and big band leader Duke Ellington), Starlite Lanes dates from the early 1950s. Just as the Duke lost out to the rising popularity of television, Starlite Lanes lost a long battle against more modern forms of entertainment. Its location in a dubious part of inner city Detroit probably hastened its demise. Adventurous souls can see the building up close & personal: drive out to Royal Oak Township, just across 8 Mile Road in north central Detroit – and keep your car doors locked.

There’s that brilliant turquoise again. If any color defines the Fabulous Fifties, it’s this particular blue hue. Cars, kitchens, most any kind of plastic consumer goods and of course bowling alley seats all glowed with this classic Atom Age tint.

 

Starlite Lanes, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.

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Kanagawa Toyo Bowl, Yokohama, Japan

In 1980s Japan it seemed anything was possible – if you built it, they would come. Such was the case with the Kanagawa Toyo Bowl on the southern outskirts of Tokyo, which opened in 1987. A three-story colossus offering 108 lanes, an on-site pachinko parlor, a games arcade, restaurants and gift shops, the complex was the second-largest bowling emporium in the world. The keyword here is “was”.

When Japan’s stock market and real estate bubbles burst in 1989, consumers slammed their wallets shut and after struggling on for a few years, so did the doors of the Kanagawa Toyo Bowl. The building that housed the Kanagawa Toyo Bowl has remained vacant since the venture went bankrupt in 1999 and though the valuable wood has been stripped from the lanes, much else remains giving the site a strong post-apocalyptic atmosphere.



 

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Kanagawa Toyo Bowl, Yokohama, Japan

'There's definitely more': Michigan man unearths more than 150 bowling balls during home renovation

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DETROIT – For one man in Michigan, a home improvement project turned into a puzzling discovery after uncovering 158 bowling balls beneath his back step.

David Olson, 33, was demolishing the back steps of his house on the morning of July 1, when he saw a black sphere buried in the sand behind some cinder blocks.

"That was one of the bowling balls. I didn't think a whole lot of it. I was kind of assuming maybe there were just a couple in there just to fill in. The deeper I got into it, the more I realized it was just basically an entire gridwork of them making up the weight in there," Olson said.

"I was actually a little happy about that because it's a little easier to roll bowling balls out of the way than to move the sand and figure out where to put all that," he said.

While Olson's initial count on Facebook totaled 50 balls, he uncovered more and more. Later,. Olson counted about 120 balls. The final count totaled 158, though Olson said he could feel more balls in the ground. In recent days, Olson discovered two more, bringing the count up to 160.

"There's definitely more ... but at this point in the area I need to work, I've dug down about 2 feet lower than when I found my last ball and I think it's pretty much cleared out in that section," he said.

When he first discovered the balls, Olson said his thoughts went to his three curious young children. He contacted Brunswick Bowling Products, the maker of the balls and asked whether they could be toxic. After about a day, Olson received a response. Olson sent in pictures, and after running the serial numbers on the balls, the company determined they were made in the 1950s and verified that they were safe and could be disposed of.

While this cache might be a bowler's dream, the balls won't be making their way to the lanes anytime soon. Olson said many of the balls were in rough condition, and each of the balls had two spiral grooves cut into them. 

As for the ball's origins, Olson said there used to be a Brunswick bowling ball plant in Muskegon, Michigan. He said some ex-Brunswick employees contacted him through his Facebook post, and said workers used to take scrapped bowling balls to use as a cheaper alternative to gravel or sand.

Olson said he plans to use the balls as edging for his landscaping or to make sculptures. He also donated eight balls for a nearby church to use in a bowling ball cannon at a pig roast. He will also be giving some to his stepfather, who plans to use them as custom furniture legs.