The renovation and expansion of the historic Music Building consolidates dispersed academic resources, revitalizes a prominent 19th century landmark, provides new common spaces for faculty and students, and serves as a model for the compatibility of historic and contemporary design expression. As the campus’ first LEED Gold building, this project demonstrates that preservation, new design, and program can together produce a sustainable result.
Located in the heart of the University of Pennsylvania's historic campus core, the Music Building is listed on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places and was originally designs by Architects Cope & Stewardson. The addition is sympathetic to the existing building in its massing, materiality, and rhythm. It introduces a similarly colored terra cotta as a larger scaled rain screen system, generous expanses of glass with sun shades, and a metal cornice aligning with the broad roof overhang of the original structure. The addition's lightness and transparency contrast the solidity of the original building and openly displays music activities to the University community. On each interior level, open circulation incorporates the restored east façade, and commons and lounges offer social spaces with views to the campus.
A reclaimed campus green, framed by the Music and adjacent Morgan Building, sets the stage for outdoor performance and gathering. By re-opening the original path between the Music and Morgan Buildings, new pedestrian passages are connected to the historic campus core.