Window Coverings Improve Acoustics in Kutztown University’s Old Main
Old Main, considered to be the centerpiece of Kutztown University, is the University’s most historic building. Built in 1866, the stunning construction hosts many tours, gatherings and classes, and it houses roughly 180 students. In 2015, the University invested in updates and improvements to this prized building, including the window coverings.
The building’s magnificent reception hall, the Georgian Room, features 16 windows, each measuring 15 feet tall, paired with tall ceilings and wood floors. Because the room is used for many musical performances, acoustics were a primary concern for the space. Additionally, the University wished to accentuate the architecture of the windows with dressings, preserve the period and style of the room, and eliminate invasive, direct sunlight.
Using precise measurements and a template of the curved arch, K&H fabricated lined operable draperies and an upholstered cornice to follow the shape of the window. The fabric was a 32-ounce velour, recommended by the acoustical engineer, specially used for acoustics and noise control. The material is thick, highly porous, pleated, and mounted at a specific position for optimal noise control. The design fit the bill, with period-inspired hues and meticulously curved cornice and drapes that matched the arched windows. Additionally, the drapes can traverse closed for light control.
The University was pleased that the curtains enhanced the windows’ architecture, that the treatments significantly improved the room’s acoustics, and that the staff could close the curtains when necessary.