Quinn Evans Architects is providing ongoing services for multiple restoration projects at this National Historic Landmark.

The firm has addressed ongoing maintenance, preservation, and project planning concerns of this national organization headquarters – including exterior repairs, the restoration of the leaded glass lay-light in Memorial Hall, renovation of the President General’s Reception Room, and a feasibility study for renovations within Constitution Hall, a 3,700 seat performance space. 
 

Details

  • Architectural services for multiple interior and exterior projects
  • Refurbishment of leaded glass lay-lights
  • Original building designed by Edward Pearse Casey in 1910; addition of Constitution Hall by John Russell Pope in 1930
  • National Historic Landmark building

Awards

  • 2017 Award of Merit, AIA|DC
  • 2014 Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation, DC Office of Preservation and DC Preservation League

MAKING A GRAND ENTRANCE

The lobbies of Constitution Hall welcome over half a million patrons annually attending events such as concerts by the National Symphony Orchestra, National Geographic’s film series, the Country Music Awards, and the annual taping of Jeopardy! Through a renovation, the 475-foot-long U-shaped lobbies for this grand venue were renewed. The richness of the decorative plaster relief details and bronze rosette light fixtures within the continuous vaulted ceilings are now punctuated with a new palette of color and finishes which highlight the opulence of the historic space. The restored lobbies provide a sophisticated gathering space and appropriate entry into this nationally significant landmark venue.  

RESTORATION OF DEFINING HISTORIC FABRIC

Forty-six feet above the DAR Library floor, a large glass ceiling is the defining feature of Memorial Hall. It is comprised of twenty-five laylight panels lit by a skylight above. Comprehensive evaluation of the existing conditions identified broken glass, deflection, stains, UV degradation, and other deterioration issues. The restoration was a complex and careful endeavor requiring expert consultation and implementation. Panels were meticulously cleaned, replicated, restored and/or repaired, and maintain as many original materials as possible. Today the clear majestic glass laylight brightly lights the library and awes visitors.

GRAND DAME GETS A MAKEOVER

This dignified space is primarily used for private events and gatherings for dignitaries, performers, and special guests of the Congress and the President General. Drawing upon the richness of the period furnishings and antiques and inspired by the custom carpet that fills the room, the President General’s Reception Room was renewed. The room is brightened with a new paint scheme and custom draperies which complement and accentuate the restored ceiling medallion and intricate architectural details that surround the room.

CONTINUED LIFE FOR CONSTITUTION HALL

Since its opening in 1929, the Daughter's of the American Revolution Constitution Hall has been in continual use as a nationally renowned auditorium and performing arts venue. The 3,700 seat auditorium is the largest of its kind in Washington, DC and has hosted a variety of events throughout its history including the National Symphony Orchestra, the National Geographic film series, the Country Music Awards, and Jeopardy! The widespread appeal of the events that Constitution Hall hosts promotes the Daughter's of the American Revolution organization to a wider audience. 

HOISTING HIGH

The construction phase began with the careful removal of all the panels to an off–site location where they were carefully disassembled by the conservators. Re-assembly of all 27 panels concluded the restoration work. A new support system was added to provide greater structural capacity to each panel. Each panel was then slowly hoisted up through the Library to be reinstalled back into the ceiling. Watch the video to see this process in action.