Mills + Schnoering Architects is working with The Historic Lansdowne Theater Corporation (HLTC), a nonprofit corporation, to restore and renovate their historically significant former movie theater in downtown Lansdowne, PA. The theater, a 1927 movie palace designed by the distinguished Pennsylvania architect William Lee, was completed in a Mediterranean Revival style with extravagant interior decoration. It is the largest and most recognizable landmark in the borough’s central business district and contains a mix of retail, office, and theater space. The project will provide new life for the theater, closed in 1987, and serve as a catalyst for the revitalization of the district.
M+Sa is designing an exterior and interior restoration, renovation, and addition to address all aspects of patron, performer, and facility services, comfort, and safety. All building systems will be new, integrated with the building’s historic materials, and coordinated with a new back-of-house addition that will provide dressing rooms, a green room, loading, and storage. The building will serve as a multi-purpose performance venue, accommodating music, dance, comedy, lectures, and other professional and educational programs. The firm recently restored the theater’s marquee and outdoor lobby. The project included repair and replacement of damaged and missing materials; new lighting, including neon fixtures; replacement of historic glass panels lost to breakage over time; and replication of the oversized “LANSDOWNE” formed metal letters, which have been replaced in their original location atop the marquee after a long absence.