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Pick-Staiger: A Visual Treat

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November 1, 2005 | by Judy Moore

Pick-Staiger Concert Hall patrons are in for a visual treat this fall.

The 32-year-old orange deep shag carpeting and orange seat upholstery have been replaced by contemporary brick red and cream twist plush carpeting and color-coordinated seating.

These and other upgrades were recently made to comply with current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines and add to the safety and comfort of all patrons.

The weave of the durable new carpeting is flatter to allow wheelchairs to maneuver more easily. The hall’s original 1970s era seats have new springs and foam padding and have been re-upholstered in a flecked brick red fabric that complements the new carpeting.

Some of the original seats were removed in order to double the space for wheelchair seating on both sides of the hall. New stainless steel hand railings have been installed around both expanded wheelchair areas for patron safety, and more railings have been installed along the north and south walls of the lower area of the concert hall and the adjacent lobby to assist disabled patrons.

“Doorways to the men’s and women’s bathrooms, as well as the bathroom stalls, have been reconfigured to allow easier access for the disabled,” said Richard Van Kleeck, director of concert activities for Pick-Staiger. “Both the ticket desk in the front lobby and the ticket office at the rear of Pick-Staiger now have a lowered section to better accommodate wheelchair patrons.”

The new ADA compliant restrooms have lower water fountains, sinks and toilets, and new bathroom and stall doors and wall-mounted grab rails.

Other improvements include new and improved lighting in the rehearsal room to lessen eyestrain; a new roof above the rehearsal area; and state-of-the-art fire detection technology throughout the building.

“The new white lighting in the rehearsal room can be dimmed making it more conducive for musicians to read music notations during rehearsals,” said Andrew McGonigle, design and construction project manager. “The rehearsal room’s old lighting had reached its life expectancy and was making rehearsals difficult. As they aged, the lights turned orange.”

New door handles throughout the Pick-Staiger building are handicapped accessible.

The improvements included carpeting in the offices on the east side of the building to provide an improved environment for Pick-Staiger staff members.