Project profile: First Unitarian Society Meeting House
In Fall 2008, the First Unitarian Society of Madison completed a major new addition to its Frank Lloyd Wright-designed National Historic Landmark Meeting House. Completed in 1951, the original Meeting House has been hailed as one of the world's most innovative examples of church architecture.
In recent years, the First Unitarian Society of Madison has become one of the largest Unitarian congregations in the United States. This growth, along with ongoing architectural tours by visitors from around the world, has placed increasing demands on the original historic structure.
As stewards of this historic building, the congregation wished to maintain the integrity of Wright's original design, provide space for expanded daily needs, and align construction with the congregation's deeply held environmental values.
The 20,000 ft2 addition includes a 500-seat auditorium that triples existing seating capacity, plus office, meeting, kitchen, fellowship, and music rehearsal space.
The completed addition reflects a contemporary expression of Wright's idea of an Organic Architecture. Together, the new and the old create a whole that is in harmony with its surroundings and the environment.
(2011 AIA/COTE Top Ten Green Projects recipient)