Auburn AL – Auburn University selected Boston-based Wilson Butler Architects to design a new $50 million performing arts center that will serve as the cultural gateway to the university when the center makes its debut in 2019.
The new facility will include a 1,200-seat multipurpose theater, an intimate music recital hall, practice rooms, and studio and support spaces for students, faculty, and guest artists.
The design team includes Atlanta-based tvsdesign, selected as the project’s architect of record.
Auburn University, a public institution with over 27,000 students, utilized an atypical in-depth selection process that went far beyond the standard two-hour interview of finalists.
The four shortlisted firms participated in a four-day compensated design charrette to demonstrate their skills, creativity, and problem-solving process.
“Wilson Butler was selected based upon their strong understanding of the processes, development of strong solutions, support of our constituents, and their connection with the community,” said university architect Jim Carroll. “Their work designing performing arts centers, historic theaters, academic art facilities, and high-tech entertainment venues is nationally known, and our university team is enthused about achieving a very successful and transformative design that will draw on this diverse experience.”
Funding for the center will come in part from a donation made by John and Rosemary Brown, both Auburn University graduates. Approximately $25 million from the Browns’ gift will be dedicated to building the center. The remaining funds will be raised from additional donors.
When completed, the new 90,000sf performance center will serve as the cultural gateway to the university.