General information

  • Location address
    Detroit, Michigan
  • Location country
    United States
  • Year of construction
  • Function of building
    Theatres & cinemas
  • Degree of enclosure
    Hybrid structure
  • Climatic zone
    Temperate - cold winters and mild summers
  • Number of layers


An outdoor theater and park used mainly for musical events and constructed alongside Detroit River, this is a major part of a renaissance plan intended to revive the devastated city of Detroit. The theater seats are arranged to face Canadian territory across the water. 1500 seats are covered by a suspension membrane structure, and 2000 more persons can be accomodated on a lawn to the rear. A framed suspension structure covers the stage. This is used to support various suspended equipment and also absorbs the reaction of the suspension membrane structure. The effect on acoustics was taken into special consideration in designing the form of the roof; numerous simulations were undertaken in order to solve problems such as the time lag between sound reflected by the membrane surface behind the stage and direct sound. The solution is the result of much hard work. The lighting attached to the supports are directed at the membrane surface and provide indirect light. Light reflected off the membrane surface at night was a consideration in planning the layout. The membrane structure is beautiful designed, and the outdoor theater is a work of architecture of high quality.

[Membrane Designs and Structures in the World, Kazuo Ishii (Prof. At Yokahama National University), p 179]

Description of the environmental conditions

General comments, links

Chene Park Amphitheater

Material of the cover

  • Cable-net/Fabric/Hybrid/Foil

Main dimensions and form

Duration of use

  • Temporary or permanent structure
  • Convertible or mobile
  • Design lifespan in years

Involved companies