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Capitol Theatre interior viewed from stage looking out to audience gallery and balcony. Faux facades along walls
Capitol Theatre Restoration

Modernizing a Beloved Atmospheric Theater

Project Location

Flint, MI

Area

91,000 SF

Services

Architecture, engineering, interiors, acoustics, theater design

Awards

AIA Cleveland, Merit Award, Architecture, 2018

The historic Capitol Theatre, built in 1927-28 and designed in the 15th-century Hispano-Italian style by renowned theater architect John Eberson, is an atmospheric-type theater whose interior design incorporates diverse Mediterranean architectural elements, executed on a grand scale.

After having been closed for roughly two decades, our renovation reflects the goal of saving the beloved venue, while modernizing the theater for contemporary use. As the only remaining historic theater in Flint, the rehabilitated Capitol Theatre offers a broad array of programming, including live performance and film, for the underserved community. The design unobtrusively integrates theatrical and engineering systems upgrades within the historic building envelope to allow for a more immersive experience that does not detract from the venue’s unique character.

The multi-phased restored historic vestibules, lobbies, an arcade, and the 1750-seat audience chamber; removed a non-historic addition; restored exterior masonry and the historic marquee; and upgraded mechanical, electrical, audiovisual, theatrical, ADA, and life safety systems. Our work with the Capitol Theatre began with an initial Existing Conditions Study and Master Plan that supported fundraising efforts and included preparation of Historic Preservation Certification applications paving the way to take advantage of historic preservation tax credits. The final project qualified for substantial federal tax credits.

Awards

2018 Merit Award: Architecture

AIA Cleveland

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