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Corner view of brick building with white molded facade next to green field with pavilion roof

Murphy Arts District Recognized with an AIA Ohio Design Award

We received an AIA Ohio Design Award for our work on the Murphy Arts District Griffin Music Venue and Amphitheater. This award acknowledges the best architecture coming out of the stateLocated in the former oil boomtown of El Dorado, Arkansas, the Murphy Arts District project utilized historic state and federal tax credits that leveraged capital funding. Our master plan and design utilizes existing historic assets, including the National Register-listed Rialto Theatre, five other legacy structures, and new construction. The integrated design plan creates a multi-venue downtown arts and entertainment district that preserves and celebrates the unique identity of El Dorado while appealing to contemporary audiences and future generations. Phase One includes construction of the new amphitheater, and transformation of the historic 1930s Griffin Auto Building, a two-level, historic filling station and automotive showroom/repair shop, into a restaurant and flat-floor, indoor music venue.

Crowd sitting in lawn chairs on grass and concrete facing outdoor stage

The Murphy Arts District in El Dorado, Arkansas by DLR Group. Photo by Kevin G. Reeves.

“Our work on the Murphy Arts District is the result of strong collaboration from across the firm,” says Senior Principal and Global Cultural+Performing Arts Leader Paul Westlake, FAIA. “Many professionals at our firm contributed to the design effort, and we feel incredibly honored to be recognized for a project that not only represents our firm’s integrated design approach, but has also had a positive and lasting impact on El Dorado’s local economy.”

The AIA Ohio Design Awards promote projects that have distinguished themselves through attention to high quality design, performance, and commitment to AIA’s 10 principles of livable communities. Our firm design was recognized in the category of newly completed buildings, additions, remodels, renovations, and restorations.


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