Originally constructed in the 1970s, the Concert Hall at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex has long served as one of Birmingham’s and the region’s major performance venues, for symphonies, Broadway shows and other large-scale events. And yet the public areas were rather austere – with lots of cold, hard surfaces that weren’t exactly inviting. Davis Architects was engaged to change that – to add warmth, color, dynamism and “wow” effect.
The firm’s work on the Concert Hall included softening many of the original hard surfaces with floor-to-ceiling fabrics, replacing light fixtures with dramatic and delightful fiber optic designs that constantly change colors, creating softer and more intimate seating areas in the foyers and reception areas, replacing carpets throughout, and transforming a tired old lounge area into a contemporary Martini Bar with an energetic feel.
The result was a transformation that pleased both the client and judges for the Birmingham Chapter of the International Interior Design Association’s “IDIE Awards” in which the BJCC Concert Hall renovations took top honors in the “Best of Assembly” category. Among the judges’ comments on these extensive changes were: “Instant WOW factor; inviting, fresh, with great insertions of light and color… Introduction of the new Martini Bar energizes the existing envelope and provides additional sparkle. Lighting effects and features play well off architectural features…”