The Field Arts & Events Hall, the first of three buildings dedicated to arts, culture and science planned for the Port Angeles Waterfront Center, provides a new performing arts space and community gathering place on the city’s waterfront. Aspiring to enhance the broader creative community of Port Angeles, the building is specifically designed to support numerous community arts organisations, Peninsula College, and the city. The new cultural centre aspires to strengthen the creative community of Port Angeles and establish a place for all to feel welcome, while embracing the natural beauty of the site.
The board made an early decision to create a flexible building, but with the caveat that they had to capture vistas of both the Straits of Juan de Fuca to the North and the Olympic Mountains to the South. LMN managed to create a holistic design that is appropriate for the organisation, the site conditions and is highly effective. When complete, the Field Hall will provide a cultural hub unavailable elsewhere on the Olympic Peninsula.
The natural environment of Port Angeles, framed by the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains, is captured within the architectural gestures of the building. The public space that rises from the street to a second level provides wrap around views of the city, the water, and the mountains. Aqua green tones and textures, wood ceilings and curtain wall mullions, and forest and waterfront beach inspired landscape materials connect the experience of the building with its broader surroundings.
Design Partner Wendy Pautz commented that the new Field Arts & Events Hall is designed to be reflective of its striking, natural surroundings; where you can experience both the water and mountains. Pacific Northwest timber wood is utilised throughout the building and glass materials and textures are highlighted extensively. Referential to water hues and patterns, the interior spaces feature organic textures and blue and gold colours, reminiscent of light reflectivity and the changing nature of water.
A combination of flexible arts and meeting spaces allow for a variety of programming, with a coffee shop and fine art gallery creating a vibrant, welcoming space infused with daily life.The flexibility of the building programme in conjunction with the clear interior circulation and the expansive views of the city and the waterfront create a welcoming environment for all and aspires to create a new sense of place for the community. The unifying strategy for the whole project is the consistent introduction of natural light, and the establishment of visual corridors with views to the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains, comments Wendy Pautz.
The 40,140 sq ft building features a 500 seat multipurpose Performance Hall designed with an acoustical environment and theatrical systems to accommodate orchestral music, dance, dramatic theatre, and amplified music events and festivals. A flexible Conference Center composed of a large meeting area with three break out spaces and a Founder’s Room, convertible to 300 seats in banquet setup or 375 seats in a meeting format, complement the Performance Hall.
Dressing rooms and other performance related spaces, a catering kitchen, and an administrative suite support the operations of the building. An art gallery and coffee shop invite visitors and the community to engage in activities throughout the day. The Field Arts & Events Hall project serves as a new cultural hub for Port Angeles, rooted in the region’s natural beauty, and serving as a center for artistic activity and creativity within the community.