Providing peace of mind so you can safely enjoy the show.

JENSEN HUGHES provides engineering and consulting for a diverse range of theater facilities such as performing arts centers with stages, motion picture cinemas, “black box” theaters, and auditoriums. Often, theaters are integrated with large facilities containing retail components, museums, hotels, and other mixed use projects. By their nature, theaters pose complex fire and life safety challenges such as:

  • High number of occupants
  • Unfamiliarity of occupants with the building which could affect egress
  • Combustible scenery and drops
  • Fire protection of air supply and return systems (underfloor plenums)
  • Audio, visual and other sensory distractions (flashing lights, dim mood lighting, loud music, theatrical smoke)
  • Access to main entrance/exits
  • Historic preservation in some cases
  • Smoke and heat venting of stages
  • Smoke control in seating and lobby spaces
  • Fixed seating egress (aisle/row widths, stair dimensions, ramps)
  • Fire hazards in workshops and dressing rooms
  • Interior finishes such as wood or fabric paneling

JENSEN HUGHES’ suite of services for theaters includes a wide range of expertise in smoke control, life safety, code consulting, fire detection and alarm systems, and fire suppression systems.

Smoke Control

JENSEN HUGHES provides smoke movement analysis and testing, smoke control system design and commissioning, and peer review. JENSEN HUGHES can negotiate criteria for design and testing of smoke management systems with the local authorities.

Life Safety

JENSEN HUGHES’ life safety analysis applies codes and standards to achieve necessary standards of public and workplace safety. We survey and evaluate fire and life safety for existing properties and prepare prioritized recommendations concerning fire and life safety improvements. Along with our recommendations, we review and assist in the design of egress systems, calculate exiting rates and times, conduct and report timed exiting studies, and assist with developing emergency response and evacuation programs.

Code Consulting

Code consulting is critical to ensure compliance with the intent of applicable codes or design criteria while meeting the challenges of aesthetics, function, and cost-effectiveness for your theater. In addition, accessibility compliance is a key part of any design. JENSEN HUGHES can assist with determining code compliance with features such as platform lifts, designated wheelchair and companion spaces, lines of sight, dispersion, and restrooms.

Fire Detection and Alarm Systems

JENSEN HUGHES’ professionals evaluate the performance of existing systems or proposed designs and provide recommendations for improvements and/or vital cost reductions. Our fire alarm design services include development of conceptual designs for fire detection and notification, selection of optimal devices and components, and production of detailed and/or shop drawing level design.

Fire Protection Systems

JENSEN HUGHES’ engineers can determine your system performance requirements, evaluate the adequacy of the water supply system, produce detailed design drawings and documents, perform hydraulic calculations, and evaluate system installations.

Related Project Experience

  • Kauffman Center for Performing Arts, Kansas City, MO
  • Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Orlando, FL
  • The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia, PA
  • Hult Performing Arts Center, Eugene, OR
  • Broward Center for Performing Arts, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
  • Landmark Theater, Richmond, VA
  • Richmond Center Stage, Richmond, VA
  • Hippodrome Performing Arts Center, Baltimore, MD
  • John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, Washington, DC
  • Providence Performing Arts Center, Providence, RI
  • DAR Constitution Hall, Washington, DC
  • Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Baltimore, MD
  • Landsdowne Street Music Hall, Boston, MA
  • Fox Theatre, San Jose, CA
  • Wang & Shubert Theaters, Boston, MA
  • A Noise Within Theater, Pasadena, CA

Contact Us Today:

Contact us today using our online form or by contacting one of our many regional offices. For specific questions regarding JENSEN HUGHES’ services for Theaters, please contact:

Shamim Rashid-Sumar
Vice President – Development, Middle East
T: +9714 228 2841 | USA m: +1 443 256 8178 | UAE m: +971 50 846 5137