College of the Holy Cross Prior Center for the Performing Arts

College of the Holy Cross Prior Center for the Performing Arts

Worcester, Massachusetts
United States
Holy Cross Prior Performing Arts Center

TYLin provided structural engineering services for the new Prior Center for the Performing Arts in Worcester, Massachusetts.

This new three-story building includes a 400-seat proscenium theatre, a 200-seat flexible performance space, high-tech multimedia and collaborative areas, rehearsal spaces, and the relocated Cantor Art Gallery. It also houses dress and scenery shops, a dance studio, and other back of house production spaces.

The steel-framed structure has concrete-on-metal-deck flooring. A partial basement located below the lobby and southernmost theater is concrete slab-on-grade enclosed by reinforced concrete walls. The building exterior is wrapped in a parabolic exoskeleton composed of glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) and corten weathering steel panels. This exoskeleton is supported on curved hollow structural section (HSS) tube framing. This framing was designed to be laterally pinned back to the main structure but able to support the facade on its own. Engineers also developed models in Revit to facilitate coordination with the architect and steel fabricator.

Project Highlights: 

  • The program of the 84,000 square foot building is divided into four pavilions arrayed around a central triple-height lobby known as the Beehive.
  • A floating feature stair juts into the lobby area and connects all three levels.

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