Doylestown County Theater
Celebrating Theater in Local Society
Doylestown, PA

Project Type

The iconic 1938 County Theater is situated in the cultural center of Doylestown borough. The historic movie palaces of the early twentieth century connect us to our past. We see the new expanded theater as an opportunity to look forward; a kind of urban synchronicity that recognizes the paths taken and those we have yet to explore.



To complement the cultural district, the Doylestown County Theater envisions an architecture that is emblematic of the generative development in the arts and global culture. The proposed facade concept honors the stately art deco movie theater by asserting its quiet presence as a kind of background building that empowers the current facade.

Community Inspired Design


East State Street comes alive as theatergoers happily wait in line to reach the ticket booth in what can be viewed as a ritualistic communal activity. Inspired by the urban street life and occasional sidewalk congestion, the design concept celebrates the theater and its place in local society. The design proposes an outdoor living room; an angled plane recessed under cover where people can gather before and after the show. Inside, a sweeping curve forms the concession that occupies a two-story lobby. An open air, rooftop-screening room may be added later to the theater’s programming. Alternatives may also include a roof garden and /or an array of photovoltaics.

Circulation and Interior Design


The concept imagines a kind of circulation orbit that allows for easy access to all three theaters, new, larger restrooms below the main level and offices slung over the lobby. The interior design will resolve as one by extending the curvilinear lines of the existing theater to the new; a variant of the steri-strip as spatial glue.