The music court, created in 1899-1900 by Olmsted Associates, is situated in Essex County - Branch Brook Park, immediately west of Branch Brook Lake. Two pergolas were constructed during 1900 to demarcate the north and south ends of the court. These pergolas were constructed with a decorative wood trellis and tree trunks (bark included) as columns. In 1920, stucco-clad restroom pavilions - the Music Court Pavilions - were constructed under both the north and south pergolas. At project commencement, the Music Court Pavilions had been vacant and the pergolas, under which the pavilions were constructed, had been demolished for many decades. Original documentation, though limited, did exist for both pavilions and pergolas.
Restoration and Re-creation
The north pavilion was identified for restoration and seasonal occupancy with its original restroom function. The south pavilion was identified for adaptive-reuse as a year-round meeting facility. We designed a perimeter trellis for each pavilion whose elements appear very similar to the originals. We designed cast stone replicas of the columns, whose forms were created from living trees to match the texture of the original bark columns. Cast stone column capitals were created based on original details and photographs. Decorative wood trellis ends match those visible in original sketches and photographs.