The ELM

The ELM

Logjam Presents plans to build the ELM, a concert venue, at the corner of Seventh Avenue and Short Street.

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A Missoula entertainment and promotion company will break ground on a 1,500-capacity music venue in Midtown on Monday.

Called the ELM, the venue is backed by Logjam Presents, the same company behind Missoula’s Top Hat and Wilma Theater as well as the Kettlehouse amphitheater. It will be located on the corner of Seventh Avenue and Short Street, just south of the RSVP Motel.

The name is an acronym formed by the names of Logjam owner Nick Checota’s three kids. Historically, Checota said, naming theaters after family members or people close to the owner was common, as with venues like the Ellen Theatre and The Wilma.

The name “ELM” also fits the profile of the venue, he said, which will feature wood paneling and several large, glass windows. The building will set back from the street to allow for long lines and crowds. In the building’s interior, there will be a sloping pit similar to The Wilma and a general congregation area with a bar. The second floor will have a large outdoor terrace and an indoor wraparound balcony with additional seating.

Checota said the space is working out parking right now. There will be a nearby parking lot with 40 to 50 spots and on-street parking. Checota said he is also speaking with nearby businesses that close earlier in the day to see if they can use their parking lots.

There are no parking requirements in the area, he said. This isn’t uncommon: He said requirements for the area surrounding The Wilma and Top Hat are similar.

The ELM is meant to fill a niche between the city’s existing venues, Checota told the Chronicle in May 2018. The Rialto holds 450 at full capacity, and the Brick Breeden Field House can hold around 8,000.

The ELM is slated to open and have its first show in January 2020, Checota said.

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Abby Lynes can be reached at alynes@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2651. Follow her on Twitter @Abby_Lynes.

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