Award-winning Project

The Senator Theatre



The Senator Theater, built in 1939, is an historic Baltimore landmark and a neighborhood anchor. It is one of the few remaining Art Deco buildings in Baltimore. The main theater has the largest screen and largest number of seats of any movie theater in the Maryland.

The challenge was to restore an historic landmark, while expanding the building to add three additional theaters and a small restaurant on an extremely confined site. A.R. Marani worked closely with the owner for more than a year to refine the budget and advise on design and constructability before beginning construction.

The footprint of the new theaters and wine bar extended to the property line on all sides, posing significant construction challenges, including shoring to support a side street, easement access on neighboring property and City right-of-way issues.

A.R. Marani performed site surveys, provided layouts, conducted field measurements and developed constructability concepts to complete the various phases of construction. We provided detailed designs, elevation drawings, sections and plans, which were reviewed by the design team.

The theater additions required extensive layout and field measuring. All three are somewhat triangular, with multiple elevation changes at the floors and roofs. The property lines are not perpendicular to each other or to the main building. The rotunda, lobby and main theater were returned to their original 1939 elegance.

These areas also had to be brought up to current codes regarding fire safety, which required the installation of new fire alarm and sprinkler systems. New seating and state-of-the-art audio/visual systems were installed, with all four theaters controlled from one location.

The restoration also included the building’s exterior. Repointing, painting and glass block replacement were completed, and the marquee was rebuilt with new wiring and neon lighting.

A.R. Marani, Inc. received the “Award of Excellence” and a historic preservation award for our work on the Senator Theater

Project Details:
Architect JWA Consulting, LLC
Size 22,000 sf
Cost $1.4 Million
Award 2014 Excellence in Construction
General Contractors – Historical
Associated Builders & Contractors