Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

  • Area

    • 365,000 ft²

Design Achievement – The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) is an art school and museum comprising two historic buildings - the 1876 Landmark Building (designated a National Historic Landmark) and the adjacent 1920s-era Hamilton Building. The Landmark Building, designed by renowned Philadelphia architects Frank Furness and George Hewitt, is the first structure in the United States specifically designed for fine arts instruction and exhibition in a consolidated facility. One of the only remaining structures by Furness, the Landmark Building has been maintained and stabilized, but had not been altered from the original function or architectural condition. DLR Group|Westlake Reed Leskosky's master plan and subsequent renovation accommodates a growing program within a fixed site. To create efficiencies, the master plan includes consolidation of administrative staff, reassignment of existing interior spaces based on projected utilization, and relocation of critical program components to accommodate future development. The plan recommends space assignment in each building, relocation options for the permanent collections and archives, a preservation and modernization plan for the Landmark Building, and several land acquisition options related to student housing development and supplemental parking facilities. This design solution reinforces the image of the institution to the public, all while preserving PAFA's historic structures.

Scope Summary – This comprehensive master plan assessed existing conditions of campus buildings and provided a comprehensive plan spanning several decades. Project implementation involved sequential construction phases to ensure continuous operation. Phase 1 included several interior renovation projects that created new spaces and features in the 280,000 SF Hamilton Building: a 250-seat auditorium, a Center for the Study of the American Artist, state-of-the-art Works on Paper Conservation Lab and archives, staff areas, exhibition spaces, a café, and exterior street-level glazing and interior studio spaces. Phase 2 encompassed full renovation of the 85,000 SF Landmark Building, including improvements to interior spaces, interior finish conservation, removal of non-historic interior construction, life safety and ADA compliance improvements, and renovation of infrastructure systems. DLR Group|Westlake Reed Leskosky provided master planning, architecture, engineering, interior design, historic preservation, audiovisual, information transport, and lighting design services.

DLR Group acquired Westlake Reed Leskosky in September 2016. Today, the combined design expertise and resources of Westlake Reed Leskosky and DLR Group serve clients as a global, integrated design firm committed to elevating the human experience through design.

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

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