AIA Connecticut Recognizes Athey Center for Research and Performance

1837 Tempel Green Facade Dusk Aislinn Weidele

Athey Center for Performance and Research has won a Merit Award from AIA Connecticut's Design Awards in the category of Commercial, Industrial, Educational, and Multi-Family Residential Design (over 25,000sf).

The renovation of Palmer Auditorium on the Connecticut College campus reinforces the Athey Center’s role as a space for assembly, artistic production, and teaching. Through a series of focused interventions that responded to the building’s historic architecture, the revitalization established communal spaces that heightened the building’s porosity and create a sense of community. The project includes a new entrance, a complete façade renewal, and interior renovation to the auditorium, lobbies, lounge, costume, and workshop, as well as teaching, administrative, and support spaces.

“The design seamlessly blends old and new, bringing the beloved Palmer Auditorium into the 21st century with inviting, light-filled spaces that emphasize accessibility and technological refurbishments to better support creative research and collaboration.”

- Molly McGowan, Ennead Partner

“Working within the existing Art Deco building, originally designed by William F Lamb, our approach was to find ways to strategically carve-out additional space to better support collaboration, exploration, performance, and teaching. Improved accessibility through the building was a priority along with physically opening-up walls to increase visual transparency to reinforce that are all welcomed – strengthening the New London and campus community through assembly and the performing arts. Stylistically, the new design elements enhance the overall sense of materiality, color, and patterning associated with this style, by drawing inspiration from some of the original fixtures and motifs found throughout the building.”

- Brian Masuda, Ennead Associate Principal.

The AIA Connecticut Design Awards recognize design excellence of built and unbuilt work in Connecticut, or by Connecticut-based firms.