The goal of the City of Durham was to provide an entertainment facility with a full size theater and production stage suitable for events such as the Broadway Series South, as well as concerts and other premier events. The design team worked with the Durham planning and design groups, as well as the international Nederlander Producing Company, to design the first class facility within a very tight budget of $46 million.
The 2,800 seat DPAC is the largest facility of its kind in the Carolinas. It includes a full production facility and catering amenities, enabling the DPAC to host live theater, concerts, dance and music festivals, as well as special corporate events. Sitting adjacent to the American Tobacco Historic District and the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, the DPAC is a focal point for entertainment for the City of Durham and the region.
This project won the coveted Community Enhancement Award for 2009 for its positive economic, aesthetic and cultural effects on the city. Other awards include the AIA NC Design Award, Durham Golden Leaf Award for design excellence, and the AWI Architectural Woodwork Institute Award for Excellence.
- Energy modeling helped RMF reduce the lobby atrium load by recommending a north orientation with high performance insulating glass.
- The design achieved a total energy consumption level 25% lower than an equivalent code-compliant building.
- For optimal energy and comfort levels, displacement type ventilation air handling systems with under-floor plenums were installed and zone controlled by occupancy.
- Special features include an atrium smoke exhaust system and dedicated stage HVAC and smoke evacuation system.
- RMF coordinated a multi-faceted theatrical and stage lighting system developed from state of the art lighting concepts.
- Working with a major switchgear manufacturer, RMF designed a distribution switchboard that allowed connections with a variety of circuit sizes accessible at the front of the switchboard cover, allowing quick and easy connections for set up of the varied performances.