Ager Rd. at Hamilton St., off Queens Chapel Rd., Hyattsville, Md.
capacity: 1000 cars
years of operation: 1955-83
currently: the West Hyattsville Metrorail station
Built on the site of the former
Queenstown Airport by the DC-based Johnson-Saunders chain, this
drive-in made its mark by introducing stereophonic drive-in sound
(a speaker on each side of the car!) to the Washington market,
along with "the world's largest CinemaScope screen".
The box office had six lanes, as did the cafeteria. In 1957 it
was bought by the Redstone Drive-Ins chain (later National
Amusements). The low-lying drive-in had a tendency to flood in
heavy rains, unfortunately; in 1967 three employees were almost
killed when flood waters trapped them in the concession/projection
building. In 1983, the WMATA took over the property via eminent
domain, and the drive-in closed to make way for a station on the
new Metrorail Green Line.
Click here to see the 1979 USGS map depicting the drive-In and surrounding area. Notice the huge snack bar in the center!
Click here for an interactive 1980 aerial photo of the drive-in (zoom in or out, or compare to older or newer photos of the same site).
Got some additional information,
or some pictures or stories about this drive-in
you'd like to share? Email me -- thanks!