Supporting Our Local Cultural Landscape

The City of Norfolk has become a magnet and unprecedented model for the importance and influence of the ARTS SCENE as a definition of our local culture. In support of the arts VIA design has led multiple initiatives to promote this growth including a Visioning Phase for the Chrysler-Scope Complex, modernization of Chrysler Hall and the Scope Plaza, and design a new cornerstone to house our local cultural champions: Virginia Arts Festival (VAF), Virginia Symphony Orchestra (VSO), and the Virginia Stage Company (VSC).

Several significant opportunities were identified to seek funding in support of project goals beyond improvements to Chrysler Hall, inclusive of the entire Chrysler-Scope Complex. The Visioning exercise included an enhanced plaza and a new music and performing arts Multi-Purpose Performance and Rehearsal Venue. With the opportunity to pursue such a large investment at hand, the city commissioned VIA and our design partners to “explore the art of the possible” to leverage historic tax credits and donations from private philanthropy to realize a greater project that will position the Chrysler-Scope Complex as the major catalyst for future development in downtown Norfolk and the region.

Ultimately, the vacant parcel adjacent to the Scope Plaza was identified for this new venue.  This open green space has been a “missing tooth” in the quadrant of the last 50 years of urban renewal activity in downtown. The new venue presents open arms to the passerby. It exposes the beauty and excitement of the rehearsal and performance activities in the large multi-purpose space for all the public to see and build curiosity. VIA is zooming in and focusing on the synergies between the three cultural groups which became the genesis of this Multi-Purpose Performance and Rehearsal Venue. We are excited to showcase the amazing people leading our cultural pursuits in Norfolk and look forward to continuing to design and grow with them.

In partnership with GWWO Architects, VIA design is currently serving as Architect of Record the Chrysler Hall Renovations project, leading a transformation that will honor the historical context of the building and site, strengthen the competitive edge to attract blockbuster shows, and enhance the entire patron experience from point of arrival until the curtains close.  We are fortunate to be working in collaboration with 16 of the nation’s leading consultants in theatre planning, acoustics, historic tax credits, and a host of talented engineers to re-imagine the Chrysler-Scope Complex as a modernized icon that will represent the City of Norfolk as the undisputed leader of arts and culture in the region.

To learn more about each of these phases of our work, check out the project pages and case studies here:

Chrysler Hall Visioning Project Page  |  Chrysler Hall Improvements Case Study  |  Multi-Purpose Performance and Rehearsal Venue Case Study