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Grand Valley State University - Performing Arts Addition

More options, just next door

  • 45K

    Square Feet

  • $15M

    Construction Value

  • Allendale, Michigan

    Allendale, Michigan

Creating artistic synergy between the old and the new while bringing high-level performance venues to a high-level University

Our team was challenged to design an addition to the existing performing arts center at Grand Valley State University. This high-level performance venue includes a new black box theatre, theatre lab, rehearsal rooms, and four new ensemble rooms for the early, traditional, jazz, and percussion music programs. There’s an expanded lobby and entrance as well as patron amenities. The lobby doubles as a student lounge and provides event space inside the building.

Operating within a limited budget, we used a simple rectangular, yet highly-technical design, allowing budget dollars to be focused on the performance of the building. Like with the addition of sound-proofing materials that we used to build a new wall that separates the existing Louis Armstrong Theatre from the new black box theatre. With this technology, simultaneous performances can occur in the two theaters with zero disruptions.

The new addition includes a new costume classroom, workshop, and sophisticated costume storage facility. We also provided a master plan to update the existing facility, including the renovation of the 450-seat Armstrong Theater, lobby, support spaces, and other back stage areas consisting of dressing rooms, green rooms, and prop storage space.

At a Glance

  • Grand Valley State University
Meet Our Team

Joe Lapinski, Senior Associate

None of my inventions ever came about by accident, they came about by work – Thomas Edison

David Milligan, Associate, Senior Project Architect

I approach each project as a logic problem and strive to create a design solution that is aesthetically pleasing, sustainable and resilient.
David Milligan Associate, Senior Project Architect Read More

Joe Mitra, Senior Associate

As architects, we need to be able to analyze complex situations: understand, discover, and then propose a solution.

Theo Pappas, Associate, Senior Planner

Great architecture must be organic in its inception—relevant to those it will serve tomorrow and challenging to those who design it today.

Casimir Zalewski, Principal

It is my goal to tailor a system that is reliable, maintainable, and efficient that folds into the architecture of the project.

Joe Lapinski

Senior Associate

David Milligan

Associate, Senior Project Architect

Joe Mitra

Senior Associate

Theo  Pappas

Associate, Senior Planner

Casimir Zalewski


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