Worcester State University hosted its inaugural event in the newly renovated Sullivan Auditorium. Earlier this month, students, policy-makers and industry leaders from across the state made good use of the fully accessible and updated space and its state of the art audio-visual technology at a student summit focused on early college opportunities for high school students.
Worcester State asked LPA|A to take on the challenge of designing the significant renovation to the prominently located 1960’s-era building. The highest priority was to make the entire auditorium accessible to people with disabilities, including doorways, restrooms, the stage and backstage areas.
A raised platform with accessible ramps now allows for wheelchair accessibility from the lobby to the stage, to seating and the academic building without having to use a lift. Seating capacity in the auditorium was reduced to accommodate the accessibility features, including larger seating options.
New theatrical lighting and sound systems make for a vastly improved theater and lecture experience. Technological enhancements include new audiovisual system and mix position, new LED-based lighting at the stage, a new suspended theatrical light track, and new dimmer panel controls.
Sandra Olson, Assistant Vice president for Facilities, Operations and Planning, said of the project, “The architects at Lamoureux Pagano Associates deftly managed to create a fully compliant design. They did an absolutely fantastic job in figuring out how we could meet every code requirement for accessibility standards…It was not only important to make the site accessible, but it also had to have multi-use flexibility to meet the needs of all the various groups that use the facility.”
This article provides more details about the project.
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