The Capitol Residences sits on the historic 1922 Capitol Theatre site and continues its cultural history in a new mixed-use building, with an expansion to the Orpheum theatre and new Vancouver Symphony Orchestra (VSO) School of Music. The 25,000 square foot educational facility occupies the first four floors of the 43 level building, and includes an acoustically isolated, 120 seat recital hall with recording capabilities.
Creating state-of-the-art, acoustically isolated music facilities in a mixed-use building within a high seismic zone required unique structural solutions. The Orpheum and VSO School of Music were completely isolated from each other and from all ambient noise. The acoustic isolation is gained primarily through an air gap between airtight constructions in the floor, walls and ceilings. Such gaps alone, though, don’t allow gravity and seismic inertial forces to be transferred to the core walls during earthquakes. Part of the solution was lateral, vertical, and vibration isolation of floors, walls and ceilings.
Most challenging was the Recital Hall (Orpheum Annex), which required a preferred noise criterion (PNC) 15 and located adjacent to the elevator shaft. A 50 millimetre acoustic separation gap was recommended in the slabs around the elevator core on the first four floors, including the fifth floor slab, which carries the loads of the 38 floors above. Glotman•Simpson designed lateral and vertical isolators to support the weight of the slab and help transfer inertial forces from these floors into the core walls during an earthquake.
Images: © Bob Matheson