Irish Repertory Theater
New York City
Award of Merit
Project Owner/Developer: New York City Dept. of Design and Construction
General Contractor/Construction Manager: National Environmental Safety Co.
Lead Design Firm: Garrison Architects
Structural Engineer: Robert Silman Associates
MEP Engineer: Bodak-Cameron Engineering P.C.
Theater and Acoustical: Harvey Marshall Berling and Associates
Founded in 1988, the Irish Repertory Theater is dedicated to bringing plays by Irish and Irish- American playwrights to U.S. audiences. The theater has been located on the first three floors of a 12-story former warehouse in the Chelsea section of Manhattan since 1995. A large portion of the theater’s original structural components remains exposed to maximize usable area, resulting in a more industrial approach to the design.
This required careful treatment of the remaining elements during demolition and while assembling the steel components to serve both structural and aesthetic purposes.
Construction included the renovation of the first floor, which allowed for productions of a larger scale, better views of the stage and increased access for patrons with limited mobility. The project also included new seating, improved wheelchair accessibility and a new second floor rehearsal studio. An additional stairwell built within the auditorium creates a single entrance to the theater that allows for direct exit in case of emergency. Despite several challenges, including several personnel changes within the design and construction team, the project was completed on schedule.