Smart Financial Centre
Sugar Land, Texas, USA
The Smart Financial Centre epitomizes the 21st century mid-size venue for the lively arts. Situated south-west of Houston, Texas, the venue combines the programs of concert hall, civic center, and theatrical center in a single shape-adjusting venue.
As the first civic edifice in a new urban district of Sugar Land, the Centre sets the design paradigm for all buildings to come. Rooted in the landscape of southern Texas, the materials of the building reflect the contemporary life-style of Sugar Land while honoring the deep traditions and culture of the state.
The venue establishes a unique presence in the city with its elegance and sophistication. Within its 20,000 square foot, glass-enclosed lobby, designed for private events and fund-raisers, the full spectrum of activities in the center become a “show” visible to the surrounding public realm. Flanking masonry walls cradle a glazed facade designed to reveal the iconic bowl-shaped arena within. The expressive bowl stands at the center of the image created for the venue. Concessions and service facilities provide food and beverage for a range of events from private, catered affairs to full concert programs.
Designed to accommodate diverse demands, Smart Financial Centre can be shaped in a variety of forms. Manipulation of the audience chamber boundaries ensures that patrons never encounter the dreaded “half-empty” show of fixed room venues. In its largest configuration of 6,500 seats, the venue will be preeminent concert hall in the Houston area. Using deployable walls alongside balconies which extend down to the orchestra floor, the venue can be reduced to 4,600 seats for smaller shows, rising concert artists, and civic events. Finally, at 2,900 seats, the hall presents an elegant theatrical experience for the patrons of Broadway shows and extravagant holiday spectacles.