Without question, digital cinema is going to see the way that cinemas and projection room s are going to be designed and it is likely that it will lead to more space being available for commercial purposes be those extra seats in a screen or more space to sell popcorn. I know of screens that are now currently being built where the instead of their being one screen created, there are going to be two as there is no need for a projection room . I also know of rooms where a digital projector has been installed in the ceiling out of the way.
While their will be a need for the other equipment, such as amps, sound racks, servers etc the physical space that these take up are relatively small. At the moment the projection room has to be a certain size in the main because it requires a person to be situated in it for part of the time. The reality with digital cinema is that the equipment can sit in rooms the size of cupboards which don’t directly need to be next to the projectors in question. All the equipment need is good ventilation systems.
Much of these savings will only really benefit new build cinemas, but there is not reason why older buildings won’t benefit from ‘losing the projection rooms’ to other uses. Of course this has to be traded against having the space and access to equipment in order to do events like conferences where a technical area preferably not in the auditorium can exist.