Save the Queen: Preservation + Adaptive Reuse in Hawai'i

Doran, Marisa
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It is often difficult to view buildings as dynamic structures because of their static nature. However buildings are in fact highly dynamic and can speak to the public of both the past and present simultaneously. This is why adaptive reuse projects carry much more depth to their design than newly built structures. Adaptive reuse practices allow the chance for the public to actively get involved in the preservation of the built and cultural heritage of a place. As discussed in this document, the best approach for an adaptive reuse design shows juxtaposition between the original and the intervention. This approach shows respect to the original design as well as adds a new layer of history to an existing structure that the public can readily identify with. To test this theory, the Queen Theatre in Kaimuki, Hawai‘i, is selected for an adaptive reuse project. The importance of this theater to local theatrical history, in addition to its strong community involvement, makes the Queen Theatre an ideal target as an adaptive reuse project in Hawai‘i. The approach for the adaptive reuse of the Queen is formed by analyzing various examples of reuse projects and theater restorations in Hawai‘i and internationally. The theatrical history and architectural theater developments in Hawai‘i are also analyzed chronologically. As a result of this in-depth research, a sensitive reuse project specific to the Queen Theatre is developed. This design exploration serves as an example of an adaptive reuse project for Honolulu, Hawai‘i, which has significantly less examples than many other cities. It also contributes to the existing body of knowledge of theater restorations in Hawai‘i, which is severely limited as well.
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