2017 AIA Awards - Architecture
Spanning seven years, this $230 million project concentrated on three goals: renovating, reorganizing, and repurposing 167,000 square feet of the non-performance venues at the New York City national historic site.
Focusing on the north and south towers, which were added to Carnegie Hall in 1894 and 1897, the project saw the creation of a music education wing, expanded backstage space, consolidated administrative offices, a new roof terrace, and façade lighting to better display the landmark.
Supporting the hall’s education and community programing, the new wing consists of 24 acoustically attuned music rooms that vary in size to accommodate a range of needs, from full ensembles to solo practice. To accommodate the rooms, the architects carefully excised structural columns and floor slabs. The new practice spaces were constructed as rooms within rooms and feature floating floors, ceilings hung from spring isolators, and double glass walls that help reduce street noise.
After raising the 125-year-old roof, administrative offices have been tucked into the two floors above Stern Auditorium, the hall’s grand 2,800-seat performance space. The top administrative floor, on the mezzanine level, is surrounded by windows that flood the space with natural light. Adding a touch of drama, steel roof trusses supporting the 1891 mansard roof were exposed.
Finally realizing a feature originally envisioned in 1892, the newly landscaped ninth-floor roof terrace became possible only after substantial reinforcement to the steel trusses beneath it. A new space to gather before and after events and activities, it’s dotted with skylights that provide even more daylight to the administrative offices below.
Despite challenges facing sustainable intent due to its landmark status and urban setting, this project was awarded LEED Silver, making Carnegie Hall one of the oldest and most notable U.S. buildings in earning that distinction.