Suffolk University has restored a landmark while bringing a new theater to Downtown Crossing through the Modern Theatre residence hall.
The University's fourth student residence hall replaced the deteriorated Modern Theatre building, but the historic facade was painstakingly restored to once again grace lower Washington Street.
The spirit of the old theater lives on in a first-floor gallery and 184-seat performance space.
Revitalization of area
“It is exciting to be part of the rebirth of the Downtown Crossing area,” said Suffolk University President David J. Sargent during a November 2008 celebration of the project. “Restoring the handsome facade of the Modern Theatre will help with the continuing revitalization of Washington Street, and the new residence hall will allow more of our students to take advantage of a full residential college experience.”
Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino was on hand for the ceremonies.
“I'm delighted to be here today to begin the process of bringing the Modern Theatre back to life,” he said. “Since taking office, I have made historic preservation of theater space a top priority of my administration. I am so proud of how far we have come in reaching this goal. Restoring the Modern is the last piece, and I'm proud that as we complete this restoration we will also be advancing Suffolk’s goal of creating more on-campus housing for students.”
In addition to suite-style housing, the building features a theater with programming focused on Performance, Conversation, and Cinema.