Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center

Birmingham, Michigan




Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center


27,000 SF


Scope of Work

Lead Design Architect and Architect of Record, Historic Preservation, Interior Design, Master Planning

When the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center needed additional space for its museum galleries and classrooms, the board commissioned Tryba Architects to adapt and expand a WPA-era underground water / sewage treatment plant.

The challenge was to add more than 25,000 SF of space that respected the character of the original 1,500 SF Art Deco pump and administration building, which featured glazed brick, glass block and a 75-foot brick venting stack. The sustainable design includes nine former underground water treatment and settling tanks that have been repurposed as the foundation for new art studios and galleries. Converting and re-using the tanks saved 20 percent of the total project cost.

A master plan for the surrounding five wooded acres was also developed. Phases I and II of the project were completed in 1998 and 2002. The third phase, completed in 2006, added teaching studios, two galleries, a lecture hall and the renovation of administrative offices.

AIA Merit Award

AIA Western Mountain Region

AIA Honor Award

AIA Coloado

AIA Honor Award

AIA Denver

Award of Distinction: Best Architectural Model

AIA Denver