Altria Theater

PTA Engineering completed mechanical, electrical, technology, fire protection, and plumbing design services for Altria Theater (formerly Landmark Theater) in Richmond, Virginia. This project was a multi-phase renovation that took place over a two-year construction window. The project updated the circa 1927 building with the latest energy efficient MEP systems and increased the facility’s usability by adding multiple large restroom complexes and concession locations to improve the patron experience.  With these vital accessibility and infrastructure improvements, the facility is now well-equipped to last another 50 years or more. 

The renovations included upgrades to multiple parlor spaces, addition of concession areas and bars throughout the facility, renovations to the ballroom and a new full service kitchen to support ballroom functions, renovations to the existing public restrooms and addition of several new public restroom groups, addition of new passenger elevators, improvements to the stage house and theatrical rigging systems, accessibility upgrades to the auditorium and seating areas, and many repairs to the building envelope and roof. 

MEP upgrades included total replacement of the heating plant, the cooling plant, and the electrical distribution infrastructure. The heating plant was converted from an LP steam system to high efficiency hot water system. The chiller plant was expanded to serve the entire building, as many areas were not previously cooled. All air handling equipment was replaced with new, which included implementation of VAV and other energy efficiency control measures. The electrical systems within the facility were fully updated, including new main switchgear, new distribution, new life safety systems, new back-up generator, new house and theatrical lighting systems, new IT system, expansion of theatrical control systems, and a new theatrical sound system. Plumbing systems were upgraded to accommodate the increase in fixture count associated with restroom additions to reduce long queues and enhance the patron experience.

Notable Project Information

  • 180,000 SF historic restoration and refurbishment
  • Project Budget: $50,000,000
  • Construction was phased
  • Theater is considered a historic landmark with seating for 3,500 and ballroom capacity of 1,000

(Photo by Anton Grassl/ESTO)