When the Murray Park Amphitheater was built in 1982 it was a great community asset, providing a beautiful park setting for community theater, dance, orchestral and band music, and other performances. After 30 years, however, the many ADA deficiencies, lack of stage cover, no dressing rooms or other backstage support, and no ticket booth made for many problems. Arch Nexus was hired to evaluate the facility, investigate its deficiencies, create a vision for change, and finally develop a plan and design for improvements. Through a process of discovery and visioning, the following key elements were implemented:
- Remove the fence that surrounded the park create a welcoming plaza where patrons and park visitors can enjoy themselves before a show
- Create a permanent hard shell over the stage to protect performers from elements and to allow for upgraded lighting and scenery capacity
- Add dressing rooms, bathrooms, and green room for performers
- Increase storage and technical capabilities by building a tech booth to overlook the theater
- Upgrade house with ADA seating, handrails, and improved lighting
The experience for all the users of the building was greatly enhanced: patrons were happy with the ticketing lines, the improved bathrooms, and improved access to seating and sight-lines; actors had all the necessary amenities to focus on preparation for the show, and the technicians had the tools they needed for things to run smoothly. The Murray Park Amphitheater is now poised to remain an important part of the culture for the community of Murray for many more years to come.