The Muny Embarks on Next Phase of Renovation, Construction in Forest Park

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By KERRY SMITH, EDITOR, ST. LOUIS CONSTRUCTION NEWS AND REVIEW MAGAZINE

Tarlton Corp. began demolition earlier this month as construction manager on a $7 million back-of-house planned renovation at The Muny.

Sean Smith, director of operations at The Muny, said the work is part of the multi-year overhaul of the entire campus.

“This is really part two of the two-phase project, the first of which included a $33 million stage renovation project,” Smith said. “We continue to focus on how to produce and build shows that are better and more relevant with regard to the technologies and what our audience has come to expect.”

CORE10 Architecture is the design project partner on the current renovation, which Smith says includes a new, accessible front entry to the administrative building and increased accessibility throughout the paint shop, costume shop, rehearsal spaces, locker areas and other behind-the-scenes locations.

“All of the work that’s taking place now is part of our ($100 million, five-year) initial capital campaign, the first ever for The Muny,” Smith added. “The areas we’re now renovating were originally built in the late 1940s. The way we produce shows is vastly different than how we produced them 50 to 100 years ago.”

If there has been a silver lining due to the pandemic, Smith said, it’s that The Muny’s 35 year-round staff members have been working from home since March, enabling construction work to occur on an accelerated schedule.

“We look to complete this project in late April 2021 with the intent of bringing our team back in time for the beginning of our season in mid-June 2021,” said Smith. “This work is addressing the long-term needs that we’ve planned for over the past 15-20 years. We want to be relevant for another 100 years.”

During the peak of its season, The Muny typically employs 750 to 800 workers.

Image courtesy of CORE10

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