Marble Hall gets ‘award of distinction’

Sandra ClarkFeature, West Knoxville

The East Tennessee Historical Society has awarded a project designed by Johnson Architecture an award of distinction for the firm’s adaptive design of Marble Hall at Lakeshore Park. The honor was presented in May.

Johnson Architecture was hired by the Lakeshore Park board and landscape architect Ross Fowler to reimagine the historic structure.

“Our goal was to preserve the history of Marble Hall and make it a welcoming space for the public,” said Daryl Johnson, principal and founder of Johnson Architecture. “We are gratified that the structure has become a landmark where memories will be made long into the future.”

The design opened the 3,367-square-foot former chapel while preserving its frame and enhancing its architectural elements amid its landscape. The design maintained the exterior marble cladding, wooden frame and ceiling, cupola and intricate rose window. In addition, the design includes new, adjacent public restrooms and the new 1,265-square-foot Marble Hall Pavilion, according to publicist Scott Byrd.

Marble Hall was originally constructed in 1958 as a chapel for the Eastern State Psychiatric Hospital, later renamed Lakeshore Mental Health Institute, and is one of the few remaining buildings on the property from that era. Following the closure of the institute in 2012, the state of Tennessee conveyed the property to the city of Knoxville for recreational purposes. Lakeshore Park now draws thousands of visitors annually.

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