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1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 160 (126)

1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition
1952 Theatre Catalog
1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 160
Page 160

1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 160

Remodeling With Unrestricted Materials

Theatre Modernization Projects Need Not Be Halted If Supplies of Steel, Copper, and Aluminum Are Cut

BRIEF: Because of the uncertainty of world conditions . . . new shortages of strategic materials which are usually regarded as essential to theatre remodeling may occur without warning at any time. In the past two years . . . many remodeling projects have been abandoned'because of the short supply of steel, copper, and aluminum . . . and because many theatremen and architects did not acknowledge the value of alternate materials which are always in generous or even abundant supply. Products like cast plaster, structural glass, plywood, wall fabrics, ceramic tile, and brick and stone facings . . . often less expensive and more versatile than strategic construction materials . . .i can be used in a myriad 'of applications in modernization projects . . . not merely as substitutes . . . but as permanent, durable products in their own right. The remodeling projects depicted on these pages are remarkable for the fact that all were completed within the limitations of tough government controls on commercial building, or could have been . . . for the highly satisfactory results shown were achieved principally with unrestricted materials.

When the National Production Authority almost two years ago sharply curtailed the use of steel, copper, aluminum, and other strategic metals used in construction, many theatre owners resignedly set aside plans for remodeling

By MICHAEL J. DE ANGELIS Architect. Rochester. N. Y.

their houses, not stormingr to realize how much can be accomplished with materials which are always in abundant supply.

The prospects for remodeling, at this writing, are considerably brighter, for government controls on strategic metals are scheduled to be relaxed sufficiently to make available, after July 1, enough steel, aluminum, and copper for most remodeling projects, even those involving major structural changes. And after October 1, government controls are slated to be eased enough to permit the resumption of new theatre construction.

However, it is quite conceivable that controls could suddenly be clamped on at any time, and that the stream of construction metals available at any given moment could quickly dwindle to a meager, tightly regulated trickle once again. Should sudden, unforeseeable developments in world conditions bring about new demands on defense production and divert- large quantities of strategic construction metals from civilian use, there is no reason why the physical improvement of existing theatres should come to a complete halt; remodeling plans could be changed to make use of materials which are always in abundance, and which can serve just as satisfactorily as those in limited supply.

This great wealth of unrestricted

materials, always available, and, in most cases, more Versatile and less expensive than copper, steel, or aluminum, includes plywoods in various finishes, structural glass, cast plaster, stone veneers and brick or masonry facing. These materials, and many more equally abundant ones, are not temporary substitutes but permanent, durable products which can achieve some extremely dramatic results in the hands of designers with resourcefulness and imagination.

Using only such readily available materials, the theatre can be given a brand new look with a refurbished front and lobby, refinished walls and a modern proscenium and stage treatment. Cold cathode strip lighting can be used with extreme effectiveness throughout the house to add a brightening touch.

The writer has remodeled some 200 theatres, bringing new life to some very dismal, moribund houses. Some of the more notable rejuvenation projects which were accomplished Without the extensive use of steel, aluminum, or copper are shown on these pages. At Dipsons Capitol, Steubenville, 0., for instance, fabric wall covering was the key material used to give the auditorium a bright, new look. A new plaster cove ceiling was installed, marble walls dressed up

NO SCARCETIES or restrictions applied to the materials shown in this sketch of the proposed remodeling of the Strand. Sunbury, Penna. Modern miracles can be done with substitutes.


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1952 Theatre Catalog, 10th Edition, Page 160