Boston, MA

Symphony Hall


Designed by McKim, Mead & White, Symphony Hall opened in 1900. The auditorium, a National Historic Landmark, is home to the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO). The BSO hired SGH to investigate the condition of the building enclosure and design repairs to extend the useful life of their highly regarded concert hall.

SGH investigated the condition of the masonry facade, roofing, and the granite steps at the Huntington Avenue entrance.

Working closely with the BSO, we developed a phased renovation plan to complete the work in four short sessions between their performance seasons. As the prime consultant, we designed repairs including the following:

  • Repairing brick, limestone, and granite masonry
  • Restoring or replacing doors and windows
  • Replacing low-slope membrane and copper roofing
  • Reinforcing masonry parapets with steel bracing
  • Repairing portions of masonry piers supporting the granite steps
  • Developing masonry cleaning procedures through a series of mockups

SGH led the effort to coordinate with the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Boston Landmark Commission to obtain approval for the work. Throughout construction, we collaborated with the contractor to resolve field conditions and provided construction administration services, including reviewing contractor submittals and observing ongoing construction to compare with the design intent.

Project Summary



Completion Date


Construction Value


Repair & Rehabilitation
Building Enclosures | Performance & Code Consulting
Culture & Entertainment
The Boston Symphony Orchestra
Specialized Capabilities
Condition Assessments | Preservation | Facade Inspection Ordinances

Key team members

Susan  Knack-Brown
Susan Knack-Brown
Building Technology Division Head, Boston
Dean Rutila
Dean Rutila
Building Technology Division Head, Houston, and Safety Director