NEW YORK, April 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Known for its work on major infrastructure projects and expansive developments, Arup, the global design and engineering firm for the built environment, has recently completed a project of a far different sort: an innovative gem of an outdoor performance venue located in Columbia, MD at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods.
The 5,000 sq. ft. "Chrysalis" shelters a world-class stage beneath a steel and aluminum-shingled shell, forming a captivating collection of complex curves and arched openings to the forest beyond.
Drawing on its multidisciplinary experts in its New York and Washington, D.C. offices, Arup supplied theatrical and lighting design, and structural, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineering services, for the project. Arup's teams worked closely with parametric artist Marc Fornes THEVERYMANY; building architect Living Design Lab; specialty design-builder A. Zahner Company; steel fabricator and installer Walters Group; and, general contractor Whiting-Turner Construction Company. The team was cast and led by Michael McCall of Strategic Leisure, on behalf of the Inner Arbor Trust.
Arup addressed an unusual variety of challenges in bringing Chrysalis from concept to construction. Using 3D modeling, the firm evaluated the siting of the pavilion to optimize sightlines for the audience. Extensive wind tunnel tests provided critical information for the design of the structure's galvanized steel frame, which, since it's exposed to the elements, had to be both beautiful and robust. Acoustic studies explored the impact of sound both within and beyond the building. Tunable LED lighting was designed to animate the structure, and emphasize its fluid, organic form.
Jordan Woodson, structural engineer at Arup's Washington, D.C. office, said, "The irregularity of the project was a great appeal for our team; all our experts were really engaged. With such a unique structure, every problem was new—we used a lot of brainpower to solve them!"
The Chrysalis opened on Earth Day, April 22.
Arup provides planning, engineering, design, and consulting services for the most prominent projects and sites in the built environment. Since its founding in 1946, the firm has consistently delivered technical excellence, innovation, and value to its clients, while maintaining its core mission of shaping a better world. Arup opened its first US office more than 30 years ago and now employs 1,400 people in the Americas. The firm's employee-ownership structure promotes ongoing investment in joint research to yield better outcomes that benefit its clients and partners. Visit Arup's website, www.arup.com, and the online magazine of Arup in the Americas, doggerel.arup.com, for more information.
Contact: Tami Hausman
Contact: Rebecca Maloney