University of Alabama Performing Arts Center

H3 is currently completing documentation for a new 130,000 SF Performing Arts Academic Center at the University of Alabama. The project will include four performance venues, a 450 Seat Dance Theater, a 350 Seat Drama Theater, a 250 Seat Studio Theater and a 100 Seat Dance Studio Theater, along with production studios and rehearsal space and will be located on the recently acquired Bryce Hospital property. The new PACC, which will connect to the restored Bryce Main Building, will be the centerpiece of a vibrant new nucleus of campus and will provide students and arts patrons the highest level of performance facilities in a setting of unparalleled beauty. The new PAAC, takes notes from the historic Bryce structure and complements the original 1853 white stucco facades.

H3 conducted an extensive review of the Theatre and Dance department requirements to establish a spatial program to support their faculty, student and production needs. Special attention was paid to the dance program, providing expanded dance rehearsal space, to support the accreditation by the National Association of Schools of Dance. The expanded program provides space needed to create and collaborate within new experiential learning environments that are necessary to draw top students and retain faculty.

The new facility is designed to provide students with professional level environments that will support their transition into the professional workplace.

• Studios are sized and equipped to match commercial studios for costume, scenery, production and lighting design.
• Adjustable acoustics are provided in all performance spaces.
• Performance floors are precisely engineered for dance and drama performances.
• State of the art lighting, audio and video production equipment is integrated into all teaching spaces.

When completed, the Performing Arts Academic Center will become one of the most iconic and visited buildings on the University of Alabama campus—bringing student artists, faculty mentors, arts lovers, community members and visitors together to explore the human condition through the arts in a remarkable, one-of-a-kind facility.

CLIENT: University of Alabama
SIZE: 114,000 square feet
COST: $75 million

University of Miami Knight Foundation Recital Hall

With a history that spans 85 years, The Frost School of Music has grown into the national music leader in higher education, presenting over 350 performances per year and working to enhance the cultural richness of Miami and the surrounding region of South Florida.

Continuously recognizing the need to create more flexibility, appropriately size its venues to accommodate a range of performances, and upgrade the current technology, the university recently embarked on creating a new facility, building on its mission to support:

– Advancement of music performance
– Creativity and scholarship
– A transformative effect on the community through engagement and outreach
– Enrichment with a vibrant, innovative and brilliant cultural offering

H3 was enlisted to take on the new design, placing importance on performance quality, flexibility, and community engagement. The new program includes developing new performances spaces, a green room, ancillary spaces, storage rooms, additional rehearsal rooms, a state-of-the-art sound recording control booth, and a 2,500-sq-ft ensemble hall.

The concept design includes creating a prominent, cantilevered structure sited on a sliver of space at the edge of Lake Osceola. A large transparent glass lobby maximizes the site’s vantage point, setting the stage with a picturesque backdrop. With a covered patio facing the lake, the building takes advantage of large outdoor space on its opposite side, where visitors can view outdoor projections on the building’s facade.

With a design to carry through opportunities for innovation and an inspiring venue for students, the project sets it sights on completion in 2022.

CLIENT: University of Miami
SIZE: 25,435 square feet
COST: $26.5 million

University of Colorado Colorado Springs, Ent Center for the Arts

The Ent Center for the Arts is located on the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs Campus, across from University Village and Nevada Avenue . A popular destination for recreation and visiting the area’s unique geological features, the creation of the 92,000-sq-ft facility Ent Center expands on the university’s visual and performing arts programming as well as the city’s options for cultural attractions and events.

The Ent Center for the Arts was developed out of a need to resolve a deficit with the local university having had outgrown its current facilities and make accommodations for projected growth while also creating linkages to arts programs located between both the university and the downtown community, and would work to stand on its own as a cultural center. H3 was commissioned with collaborative architect Semple Brown to design a facility that could house all of the desired programming and remain flexible for future use and expansion with the area rapidly growing.

The design brings together a dispersal of arts facilities into a single footprint and remains sensitive to the scenic beauty that surrounds it. The fluid form with an undulating façade reinforces the contiguous curves, forms, and rifts found in the landscape, from the banding of retaining walls and winding trails to echoing the characteristics of arroyos and peaks. The building anchors to the site as a campus gateway where visiting patrons are treated to breathtaking vistas and framed views of Pikes Peak from the moment they step into the main entry vestibule and in public areas.

The lobby serves to connect four performance venues and an art gallery. A 774-seat multi-faceted concert hall, outfitted with superior state-of-the-art acoustics and lighting can be reconfigured to 500 and 250 seats through a motorized, retractable stage. The Osbourne Studio is a flexible, black box theater accommodating up to 120. The facility gives a home to the Dusty Loo Bon Vivant Theater, a 200-seat theater connected to a recording studio, and the primary performance space for the nonprofit THEATREWORKS. A 245-seat recital hall expands the university’s music capabilities with larger format productions.

A 2,500-sq-ft transformable white cube and climate-controlled art gallery brings a second community organization to the site, the Gallery of Contemporary Art (GOCA), newly headquartered at the Ent Center, and with rotating exhibits from both professional and emerging artists. At both the northeast and northwest corners of the building are rehearsal rooms and classrooms for students. A working ‘edge’ was left to continue an expansion of current programming in a later phase. The building exemplifies an appreciation of the environment, and received LEED Gold certification.

Accolades: ENR Mountain State Best Project 2018

CLIENT: University of Colorado, Colorado Springs
SIZE: 92,000 Square Feet
COST: $70 million

University of Connecticut, Fine Arts Center

University of Connecticut selected H3 to assess the vital needs of the School of Fine Arts program, space requirements, and facility condition needs to formulate a project scope of work which can be implemented over the next few years. A previous study outlined a series of major interventions to the Music Building, von der Mehden Recital Hall, Drama Wing, Art/Art History Building, Nafe Katter Theater, and Depot Campus that vastly exceeded available budget allocations. H3’s study prioritized targeted renovations within the $15 million budget to bring the School of Fine Arts facilities to a contemporary, competitive level that reflects the quality of their programs.

After the study was completed, H3 was retained to provide design services for the addition to the current School of Fine Arts Center. The proposed building addition unifies the SFA’s scattered production activities (paint shop, scene shop, and prop shop) into one location to create unity, functional cohesion, and improve circulation within the SFA complex. This new production facility reflects growing importance of the arts to the life of the University. The facility and prominent physical presence on campus is a means of increasing the connections between the main campus and fine arts having a more prominent role in the University and the larger Storrs community.

CLIENT: University of Connecticut
SIZE: 25,000 square feet
COST: $21 million

Auburn University Performing Arts Center

The Auburn University Performing Arts Center (AUPAC) will be located on the southern end of the University’s main campus located to the west of the existing Jule Collins Smith Museum. The AUPAC will provide state-of-the-art performance spaces for use by Auburn University and visiting artists to Auburn. The project includes two venues: a mid-sized multipurpose theatre and a smaller venue purpose-built for music.

AUPAC will be part of a 27+ acre Cultural/Public District that will enhance the visibility of the performing and fine arts as well as increase the presence of publicly-oriented facilities along South College Street. This concentration of cultural facilities will support the University’s desire to create a memorable campus gateway.

The facility will have similar technology and production capabilities as civic and commercial performing arts centers, however it will also support the work of academic departments of dance, music, and theater. Students require a building configuration that permits hands-on experience in rehearsing productions, scenic and costume construction, lighting, the stage-design disciplines, and the opportunity to “crew” shows. Beyond the architecture of theater, space must be allotted for faculty and students to gather. The new performance venue can be designed to maximize its utilization with spaces that permit a range of uses and encourage communal activity throughout the day and into evening performances.

In addition, AUPAC will have flexibility to host a wide variety of theatrical works, live music acts, dance presentations, and an array of visiting artists. Today’s academic venues must accommodate programming with a strong education focus, space for campus or community events, and the flexibility for rental uses which are important for maintaining higher facility utilization rates.

Most importantly, the center must provide programming that effectively engages the local community, while demonstrating an university’s enduring commitment to arts education.

The AUPAC will be a seminal capital project for the University and the Lee County region. It will elevate the campus and entire community’s quality of life with a new facility designed to become a vibrant hub of creative activity and community engagement. The venue will combine arts and education with spaces to support experimentation and community outreach, transforming this portion of the campus into a thriving artistic hub and campus gateway.

CLIENT: Auburn University
SIZE: 90,000 square feet

Long Island University, Brooklyn Paramount Theatre

H3 was retained for planning and design ser­vices for renovation and rejuvenation of the historic Brooklyn Paramount Theatre at Long Island University. The planned 24-month project to restore the storied venue to its former glory is being undertaken in partnership between Long Island University and Paramount Events Center (PEC), under the management of Barclays Center developer Bruce Ratner, Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark, and Onexim Sports and Entertain­ment.

The Brooklyn Paramount opened its doors in 1928 as an ornate movie palace, one of the first to show talking pictures. The venue later introduced rock and roll and jazz to the borough, hosting artists such as Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra. The Para­mount was converted into a gymnasium in the 1960s and was utilized by many genera­tions of Blackbirds basketball champions. Currently used as a multi-purpose space, much of its original luster and Rococo-style architectural details have been preserved. The original 1920s Wurlitzer organ–one of only two of the model ever built—remains operational and can still been heard (and felt) throughout campus during regular tuning exercises.

Long Island University President, Dr. Kimber­ly Cline is instrumental in her support of the project stating, “The renovation of Brooklyn Paramount is a major milestone in the history of LIU and it brings our commitment to the arts—and our role in the arts community—to an entirely new level for our students, faculty, and alumni, and solidifies our role as a major cultural driver in Brooklyn.”

CLIENT: Paramount Events Center (PEC)
SIZE: 56,000SF

Wright State University, Creative Arts Center

H3 is undertaking the renovation of and addition to the 187,800-sq-ft. Creative Arts Center (CAC). Together with Cincinnati-based Champlin Architecture, our team will create opportunities for enhanced collaboration and interaction among the Theatre, Dance, Motion Picture, Music and Art departments.

The Creative Arts Center building is an existing structure on Wright State’s campus. Given the prominent site location on Wright State University’s main campus, the site improvements will create a new entry and approach to the building, redefining CAC as an iconic structure on Wright State University’s campus.

In addition to the renovations required in the Creative Arts Center, the project relocates the Motion Picture program from the CAC to the current Television Center. The renovation includes updates to the production studios, support spaces and additional faculty office spaces.

CLIENT: Wright State University
SIZE: 187,800 square feet
COST: $16.6 million

Columbia University Teachers College, Cowin Conference Center

This project transformed existing space within a Columbia University Teachers College building into the new Cowin Center conference facility. Teachers College had faced a long-standing problem: they could host event for small groups under 200 people, but there was no venue for major events. The college’s only option was the outdated and acoustically-challenging Horace Mann Auditorium, where those seated in the rear of the balcony were unable to see the stage.

Teachers College selected H3 to create a phasing plan and execute the design of the project. Phase I focused on the auditorium and its complete change in structure and technology. Phase II involved moving the offices of admissions, registrar, financial aid, and other functions to a new location.

The ground floor of the Horace Mann building, on Broadway between 120th and 121st streets, has been divided into lecture rooms, seminar spaces, and classrooms able to accommodate 350 students. These spaces serve both as “break-out” rooms for conferences and as venues for lectures and small meetings.

The new 600-person auditorium features a complete change in structure with improved acoustics, expanded lighting capacity, air conditioning and heating systems, access ramps for the disabled and state-of-the-art audio-visual capabilities. H3’s design provides the auditorium requested by the college for large lectures and multimedia presentations, but can also host concert performances for music, dance and theater.

The Cowin Center, including both levels of the auditorium and the stage, is fully accessible to the physically challenged. A wheelchair-accessible entrance was added to the building on 120th Street.

CLIENT: Columbia University
SIZE: 22,000 Square Feet
COST: $12 Million

DreamYard Bronx ALL-Community

DreamYard is the largest arts education provider in the Bronx and its programs reach 8,500 K-12th grade students annually during in-school and out-of-school programs. To accommodate the growing institution, the DreamYard Bronx Arts, Learning and Living (ALL) Community will offer affordable housing, a new public high school building, community space, exhibition space, after school programming, Universal Pre-K and employment opportunities in a new purpose built 120,000 square foot facility. Born of a partnership between DreamYard, BronxPro and the New Visions/New Century High School, DY Prep, this experienced group of partners will provide a development solution at a lower cost and faster than the current school construction process can accomplish.

The first floor of the building will provide a visual arts gallery, studio space, a theater and a computer lab for use by all community members. The proposed design includes additional public gathering spaces that generate revenue, such as a café or locally owned retail store. DY Prep will occupy the second through fourth floors of the building throughout the school year. DY Prep’s vision is to provide students with opportunities to present their work in professional arts venues as well as receiving vocational training through arts related internships. This vision will be realized through creative spatial design on every floor of the building. Whether in informal gathering/presentation alcoves or the theater and gallery space, every opportunity is made to create interactive design throughout the building. The Bronx ALL-Community confidently works to redefine educational spaces to support the Scholarship, Artistry and Character of DY Prep students.

Floors 5-14 will contain 85 units of affordable rental housing managed by BronxPro. Common areas will be decorated with furnishings and art work created in partnership with DYPrep, lending the residential portion of the building a warm and welcoming atmosphere. In addition, Bronx Pro will provide residential services to the households of the complex, assisting them with entitlement counseling and referrals to other community based social service providers. Most importantly, the Bronx ALL-Community model will include a novel approach to teacher and school leader retention. BronxPro will set aside affordable housing units in the building for public school teachers and artists, to ensure the neighborhood’s capacity to retain and nurture Bronx-born talent in service to the community.

CLIENT: The DreamYard Project / BronxPro
SIZE: 115,000 square feet