AIA DC Recognizes Cincinnati Music Hall Project

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 23, 2019) – The Washington, D.C. Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) recently recognized OTJ Architects’ renovation of the Cincinnati Music Hall. The project received an award of Excellence in the Historic Resources/Preservation category of the Institute’s yearly competition.

Constructed in 1878 and declared a National Historic Landmark in 1975, the Ohio venue is home to the Cincinnati Arts Association, the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra, the Cincinnati Opera, the Cincinnati Ballet, and the May Festival Chorus.

After years spent in decline, the hall received approval for its renovation budget and was awarded allocation for a state historic tax credit as a result of the efforts of multiple advocacy groups dedicated to preserving the structure. Cincinnati Music Hall’s final design was required to meet the Secretary of Interior’s Standard for rehabilitation of historic buildings, including approval from the Ohio State Historic Preservation Office and the National Parks Service.

OTJ’s program of work focused on the restoration of this historic landmark to national standards, the redesign of the performance facilities to improve the overall patron experience, and the execution of lasting structural improvements to secure the building’s longevity. OTJ Partner Gary Martinez, FAIA, remarked: “We are humbled to be recognized by the AIA’s DC chapter for our efforts to breathe renewed relevance into what has long stood as a culture icon in the Cincinnati community. It is a truly unique building that solicits deep understanding of its historical significance and the changes it has endured over the years. With an expert team in place, our focus was on restoring the Music Hall’s heritage and revitalizing the connection to history for performers and patrons, alike. Our techniques resulted in a successful space, now adapted to the needs of each resident company.”

Additional project contributors include Executive Architect, Perfido Weiskopf Wagstaff + Goettel (PWWG) – Acoustic and Audio/Video Consultant, Akustiks – Lighting and Theater Designer, Schuler Shook – Construction Manager, Messer Construction – Restoration Consultant, EverGreen – Historic Preservation Professional, Judith Williams – MEP Engineers, Pennoni Associates, Inc. – Structural Engineers, THP Limited, Inc. – and Developer, 3CDC.

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