Princeton architectural ‘Firm of the Year’ has renovated Statue of Liberty, sites across the U.S.

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Civic Theatre, Allentown, Pennsylvania PHOTO COURTESY OF AISLINN WEIDELE
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Hill College House, University of Pennsylvania, PhiladelphiaPHOTO COURTESY OF AISLINN WEIDELE
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Civic Theatre, Allentown, Pennsylvania PHOTO COURTESY OF AISLINN WEIDELE
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Hill College House, University of Pennsylvania, PhiladelphiaPHOTO COURTESY OF AISLINN WEIDELE

Mills + Schnoering Architects of Princeton has been recognized by AIANJ as its Firm of the Year for 2020.

The firm designed award-winning accessibility and life safety renovations at the Statue of Liberty that significantly improved visitor safety and circulation. Their civic portfolio also includes the documentation and assessment of iconic structures like the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and the Washington Monument; work with the General Services Administration for a range of tenant agencies at various federal buildings and sites; and such regional community-based projects as the design of a new addition to the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK), and the award-winning restoration, renovation and rehabilitation of the Louis I. Kahn Bath House and Day Camp Pavilions.

The firm’s longtime membership in and nearly decade-long board service to the League of Historic American Theatres (LHAT) has advanced its national visibility. Regionally, membership in and board service to the New Jersey Theatre Alliance and its innovative Cultural Access Network project has provided important connections to arts organizations statewide. Cultural design work has included planning, preservation, renovation, and building infrastructure projects at destination venues such as Aspen, Colorado’s historic Wheeler Opera House and Washington, DC’s Clara Barton Missing Soldiers Office Museum; new designs for regional venues including the Hamilton Stage in Rahway, a vital new component of the Union County Performing Arts Center; and resilient structures for live performance and multimedia arts including a new riverfront performance bandshell in Burlington City.

The firm has prepared facility master plans and designed programs of renovation, restoration, and expansion for a variety of regional theaters in lively downtown centers from Chattanooga, Tennessee’s Tivoli Theatre to Allentown, Pennsylvania’s Civic Theatre.

The firm is also currently working to rehabilitate and renovate the home and offices of Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the “Father of Black History.” A new museum at this National Historic Site will document and interpret the legacy of the historian and activist whose scholarship helped to inspire the intellectual fervor of the modern Civil Rights Movement.

Over the past several years, the firm has partnered with Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken to document their campus overlooking the Hudson River and Manhattan Skyline.

The firms’ comprehensive renovation of the University of Pennsylvania’s Hill College House dormitory in west Philadelphia, a landmark mid-century residence hall by Eero Saarinen, carefully restored and enhanced the original Saarinen design while making significant improvements to all interior spaces, amenities and services, accessibility, and building and performance systems. The LEED Gold project has been widely honored by industry peers and design publications and praised by both university leadership and student residents alike as a great place to live and learn.

The award will be presented by AIANJ during its annual AIA New Jersey Installation and Awards dinner.