A consulting firm’s commitment to public engagement was the difference maker Tuesday as the city of Rochester’s Chateau Theatre Re-Use Task Force decided between the final two firms to lead the restoration and re-use project at the downtown theater.
“Community involvement doesn’t have to be ‘open the doors and see who shows up,'” said John Mecum, a principal at Minneapolis-based Miller Dunwiddie Architecture.
The public engagement process for re-use of the Chateau Theatre could involve public events, performances and focused meetings with performing arts organizations, said Denita Lemmon, an associate principal at Miller Dunwiddie.
“We specialize in historic properties but we also specialize in a process, and one of the things I excel at is including community engagement,” said Lemmon, who will act as project manager.
Members of the Chateau Theatre task force were struck by the public process approach promised by the Miller Dunwiddie representatives, and it led to the task force agreeing to recommend that firm to provide professional consulting services on the project.