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Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Sarasota, FL Port Cochere

Replacement of PVC Fabric Cover Damaged in Hurricane


The Van Wezel Center is the crown jewel in downtown Sarasota. Every year it brings premier musical acts and stage productions to the city. It features unique and dazzling architecture that follow through on a tension fabric port cochere structure on the front of the building. In 2017, the port cochere was badly damaged from Hurricane Irma and needed to be completely repaired and renovated.


As you can see from the photos, the tension fabric cover on the port cochere features an intricate and complicated design. Few companies in the industry have the capability to reverse engineer such a structure and recreate a design with so many custom elements. Signature’s clean-sheet philosophy as well as our unmatched surveying capabilities allowed us to both design and fabricate a replacement cover as well as engage our project management experts to come up with an install procedure that would allow for a seamless refurbishment.

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall


The project required multiple visits by Signature personnel to survey the frame and fabric, analyze required repairs and re- move the remnants of the damaged fabric in order to prepare the structure for its new cover. Due to the unique design of the port cochere, the fabric “cover” actually consisted of many smaller fabric sections that had to be meticulously installed and integrated to create a seamless look. In addition, the membrane was a unique color that was not readily available. Signature worked with Seaman Fabric and utilized their 3820 FLRTC Shelter-Rite product due to its versatility and ability to color match the rest of the impressive architectural marvel that is the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center.

Check out our Entertainment Structure Projects or contact one of our experts for assistance with your next tensile application project or structure maintenance needs.

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