SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Wofford College’s restoration and renovation of Main Building’s Leonard Auditorium has received a “Project of Distinction” Award in College Planning & Management magazine’s 2007 Education Design Showcase, and the magazine recognized the project’s designers, McMillan Smith & Partners Architects PLLC in Spartanburg, for “Outstanding Architecture and Design in Education.”
The project will be included in the June 2007 issue of College Planning & Management’s Education Design Showcase.
The Leonard Auditorium renovation was part of an $8 million restoration/renovation of Main Building. The complete interior upgrade, completed in early 2006, restored Leonard’s 19th century appearance in tandem with improving fire protection and other considerations in the building. The project fully honored the college’s primary objective to recreate the original character of the auditorium.
“It looked a lot different,” says Donald L. Love Jr., AIA, an expert at historical restorations with McMillan Smith. “It was clear the auditorium space evolved over time. This meant the recreation had to draw from a number of different time periods. We kept the proscenium, the arched opening separating the half-round stage from the auditorium.”
Historic photography also revealed that the space had wooden pews rather than the auditorium-style seating. The administration considered regular seating as a more comfortable option. Ultimately, replicated pews went into place in the auditorium.