Stanley Beaman & Sears re-shapes the past, present, and future of the Atlanta History Center
The story of the phoenix is a well-worn metaphor for the history of Atlanta. Reborn from its own ashes, the mythological bird symbolises reinvention, difficulties, breakthroughs and a shining future. Likewise, the newly designed Atlanta History Center must capture the uplifting energy coursing through the city. In short, the time for the Atlanta History Center is not the past – the time is right now.
A newly defined architecture for the Atlanta History Center is shaped by the cultural and physical forces that flow through its walls and the surrounding site. The gesture emerges from the landscape, flies through the building boldly redefining the interior, and bursts forth into the community with a grand, uplifting sweep of its wings.
A 'Knowledge Hub' features an interactive display engine allowing an unprecedented ability to access historic documents with the touch of a finger. The Knowledge Hub orientates visitors and unveils the vast array of museum offerings currently hidden away within its mysterious archives. New learning cores provide direct visual access to the spotlighted, expand upon exhibit themes, and engage multi-generational audiences in active learning, discovery and research.
The wing-like ceiling of the Hall of Enlightenment redefines flexible museum space and provides a clear spatial hierarchy between the atrium and the ballroom pre-function space. Cross section panels allow displays to emerge and vanish into the spaces between the ribs while concealing necessary building systems hung from a unistrut framing system above.
With countless rich narratives to shelter under one swooping roof, the architecture of a re-imagined Atlanta History Center engages the casual spectator and turns them into an active participant in creating the city’s story. The building boldly reaches up and out to the world and invites everyone to make history.