The Shared Vision: Built in 1935 as part of the Minnesota State Emergency Relief Administration (SERA), the Willmar City Auditorium is used by the Willmar community for a wide range of educational and sports-related activities. Engan Associates and the City of Willmar embarked on a recent project to resolve several needs for this well-loved, well-used public building. The most pressing of these was to restore indoor air quality, as lead dust had distributed throughout the building from the basement-level community firing range. Additional needs included building envelope restoration and assessment of accessibility issues.
The Innovative Process: A Building Condition Study and Master Plan was first provided to the City in order to outline needs and prioritize projects. Following this work, projects were completed to address lead abatement, HVAC equipment, firing range restoration, exterior building preservation, and interior systems and accessibility upgrades.
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- Client: City of Willmar, MN
Working with existing space is harder than building new. The result is better if you can blend the old with the new. In any project we do, we like to have a story and a history. Where we come from is where we’re going–not living in the past but not destroying the past either. You have to learn from the past to live in the future.