As the first major expansion in Kennedy Center history, the REACH breaks down boundaries between audience and art. Designed by renowned architect Steven Holl, the REACH provides visitors with the opportunity to fully interact and engage with the Center. You can watch a simulcast, view an outdoor art installation or catch a glimpse of a dance rehearsal in one of the windowed studios. This is our newest and boldest offering in continuing President John F. Kennedy’s legacy and his vision to advance the “contribution to the human spirit.”

Holl’s expansion connects community with art, and art with nature through three distinct pavilions—a Welcome Pavilion introducing guests to the REACH, a Skylight Pavilion featuring panoramic views of the new landscape, and a River Pavilion bordering the Potomac River. Outdoor spaces include gathering places and dining options, as well as a stage and video wall that will host live performances and movie nights. Inside, there are three new classrooms, a dedicated Learning Lab and The Forum—a space for film screenings, lectures, and intimate performances.

Meet The Design & Project Team

Founded in 1976, Steven Holl Architects (SHA) is an internationally recognized, design-oriented firm with locations in New York and Beijing. SHA has realized cultural, civic, academic, and residential projects both in the United States and internationally.

Steven Holl Principal & Lead Designer

Steven Holl graduated from the University of Washington and pursued architecture studies in Rome in 1970. In 1976, he joined the Architectural Association in London and established Steven Holl Architects in New York City. Considered one of America’s most important architects, he is recognized for his ability to blend space and light with great contextual sensitivity and to utilize the unique qualities of each project to create a concept-driven design. He specializes in seamlessly integrating new projects into contexts with particular cultural and historic importance.

Steven Holl has been recognized with architecture’s most prestigious awards and prizes, recently: Praemium Imperiale International Arts Award for Architecture, 2012 AIA Gold Medal, the RIBA 2010 Jencks Award, and the first-ever Arts Award of the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Awards (2009). In 2011, the Horizontal Skyscraper received an AIA National Honor Award. In 2010, the Knut Hamsun Centre and the Horizontal Skyscraper were given an AIA New York Honor Award, and the Herning Museum of Contemporary Art won a RIBA Award. In 2006, he received honorary degrees from Seattle University and Moholy-Nagy University in Budapest.

Mr. Holl is a tenured Professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture and Planning. He has also taught at the University of Washington, the Pratt Institute, and the University of Pennsylvania. He has lectured and exhibited widely and has published numerous texts.

Chris McVoy Senior Partner

Chris McVoy received his Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from the University of Virginia, pursuing studies in Venice in 1985. He graduated with a Master’s of Architecture from Columbia University in 1992 and upon graduation worked with Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects. Chris McVoy joined Steven Holl Architects in 1993 and was made the first Partner in 2000.

As Senior Partner, Chris McVoy collaborates with Steven Holl in cultural projects, and oversees their realization. He has been internationally recognized for his expertise in designing museums and university buildings, including the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Kansas City, MO), which TIME named the “#1 Architectural Wonder of 2007” and The New Yorker called “one of the best museums of the last generation.” Mr. McVoy has been honored with a Guggenheim Fellowship, a William Kinne Travel Fellowship, and an American Scandinavian Foundation Grant. He has participated in international arts symposia and lectured widely on the firm’s work.

Project Team

Steven Holl Architects
Design Architect

Architect of Record

Paratus Group
Owner’s Representative

The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company
Construction Manager

Robert Silman Associates
Structural Engineer

Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing Engineers

Langan Engineering and Environmental Service, Inc.
Site/Civil, Geotechnical, and Environmental Engineers

Edmund Hollander Landscape Architects
Landscape Architect

Thornton Tomasetti
Envelope Consultant

Transsolar KlimaEngineering
Sustainability Consultant

L’Observatoire International
Lighting Consultant

Harvey Marshall Berling Associates
Audio/Visual, IT, Security, Acoustic Consultant

Stuart-Lynn Company, Inc.
Cost Consultant

Reginald Hough Associates
Architectural Concrete Consultant

Life Safety, Building Code Consultant

Gorove/Slade Associates, Inc.
Traffic and Parking Consultant

Vertran Enterprises, Ltd.
Vertical Transportation Consultant

Stantec Consulting Services, Inc.
Environmental and Regulatory Compliance Consultant

Robinson & Associates
Preservation and Historical Consultant

Questions & Solutions Engineering
Commissioning Agent

JGL Food Service Consultants
Food Service Consultants

The Building the Future Capital Campaign supports the design and construction of the REACH and provides critical funding for its various programs and activities. All of this would not be possible without the leadership of Kennedy Center Chairman David Rubenstein and Campaign Chair Michael Neidorff, as well as more than 300 individuals, foundations and other corporations. For their commitments, we are immensely grateful.