Extensive project list for Tanglewood upgrade

Sunday June 16, 2013

LENOX -- An extensive "punch list" of renovation projects at Tanglewood is on the horizon for the Boston Symphony as part of its ongoing investment in the infrastructure at the orchestra's summer home, according to BSO Managing Director Mark Volpe.

In response to a request to elaborate on remarks he made recently to about 250 Berkshire Chamber of Commerce members, Volpe explained via email that updates, repairs and improvements to the facility's buildings and grounds have been underway in recent years as part of a continuing effort to catch up with deferred maintenance.

Already, the BSO has spent more than $2 million annually since 2006 on the projects, including some that could no longer be delayed.

At the Chamber breakfast meeting on Wednesday, Volpe told the audience that "there are buildings at Tanglewood that are pre-Civil War. We have 80 structures and so we're in the process over about a seven- or eight-year period of investing about $30 million in the physical plant. That's something that hopefully will enhance the experience of patrons."

"In recognition of the needs at Tanglewood, we've established that we need to raise over $70 million to address the physical plant issues, split fairly evenly between addressing those and investing in endowment support for ongoing maintenance," Volpe stated in his email.

With an eye toward future investments, a forward-looking Tanglewood master plan has been drawn up.

In order to support an array of long-term future projects at an estimated additional cost of $70 million, fundraising will be needed for Shed renovations, including a new roof; exterior and roof projects at Ozawa Hall, including backstage, sound and lighting needs; interior renovations to the Tappan Manor House; and a new rehearsal building for the Tanglewood Music Center's 150 advanced young professionals. Also on the list: A storage building and tent pavilions.

So far, updates to the Koussevitzky Music Shed have included acoustical "clouds," lighting, catwalk modifications and sound systems.

At the Theater-Concert Hall, just west of the Main Gate, rehearsal and practice studios also have been enhanced.

Projects also completed include: Electrical updates to all safety and lawn systems, including fire alarms and sprinklers, and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance at the Highwood house, where patron events are held; Serenak, the former Koussevitzky residence that now houses performing artists and hosts special events; and the Tappan Manor House, which includes the visitors' center and administrative offices.

Among other projects on the grounds, Volpe listed an upgraded Main Gate, pathway lighting, signs, restroom improvements, road paving, updates to sewer and water lines, garden restoration and enhancement in the Oak parking lot and the Weber gate. The Glass House gift shop also has been improved.


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