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The Music Center Earns UL’s Verified Healthy Building Mark

The Music Center debuts as first performing arts facility to earn UL Solutions’ Verified Healthy Building Mark for Indoor Air.

The Music Center’s Walt Disney Concert Hall credit Henry Salazar, County of Los Angeles

UL Solutions’ Verification Mark helps build confidence as facilities reopen following pandemic 

The Music Center's Ahmanson Theatre (credit The Music Center)
The Music Center's Ahmanson Theatre (credit The Music Center)

A landmark performing arts facility in Los Angeles, The Music Center includes a 22-acre complex encompassing four theaters and 36,000 square feet of outdoor space. One of the largest performing arts centers in the nation, The Music Center is dedicated to supporting the community and uniting people through the arts. In addition to curating artistic performances, The Music Center is also committed to excellent indoor air quality performance, relying on global safety science leader, UL Solutions, for their expertise and capabilities in this area. In December 2020, The Music Center became the first performing arts center to earn UL Solutions’ Verified Healthy Building Mark for Indoor Air.

Good IAQ takes center stage as facilities reopen

The Music Center’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Howard Sherman has been with The Music Center for more than 30 years and champions good indoor air quality (IAQ) in its buildings. “Campus safety has always been a priority. We take our commitment to our artists, patrons, employees and the community very seriously. We are dedicated to providing a safe, comfortable environment in which to enjoy the arts, and good IAQ is a big part of that commitment,” Sherman said.

Demonstrating a pioneering spirit since its founding nearly 60 years ago, The Music Center has prioritized indoor environmental quality for more than 20 years, calling on UL Solutions to conduct a wide range of inspections including IAQ, and the provision of preventative maintenance best practices.

“Just as we select the best performers for our stages, we sought the top experts in the field of indoor air quality to provide us with expertise and services to support healthier indoor environments. UL is that expert, and we have built a relationship characterized by trust and collaboration over the course of more than 20 years,” said Keith McTague, director and chief engineer, Building Services, at The Music Center.

Prior work set the stage for UL Verified Healthy Building Program

The Music Center's Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (credit Tim Street-Porter)
The Music Center's Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (credit Tim Street-Porter)

In 2020, UL Solutions introduced the UL Verified Healthy Buildings Program, designed to help building owners and operators communicate their commitment to maintaining healthy buildings. 

Given The Music Center’s long history of practicing proactive IAQ measures, the organization’s management and operations team felt confident in pursuing the program. They believed the UL Verified Healthy Building Mark for Indoor Air would provide meaningful third-party Verification of their achievements in good IAQ, which have been a priority for years.

“Verification for The Music Center was a straightforward process, largely thanks to their long-term commitment to pursuing good IAQ,” said Sean McCrady, director, assets and sustainability, Real Estate and Properties at UL Solutions. “We were able to collaborate on inspections just as we have for over 20 years and make suggestions for improvements, tackling challenges as a team. The Music Center’s extensive IAQ knowledge and efforts enabled them to complete the process in just a few weeks.”

The Music Center enjoys a true partnership with UL Solutions. Qualified inspectors from UL Solutions worked on site for evaluations and conducted thorough inspections, collaborating with The Music Center’s operations team to make improvements. Some of the measures taken as a result of the Verification process included implementation of advanced HVAC performance measures, the selection and evaluation of cleaning products that contribute minimally to indoor air pollutants and training for operations staff on measures to support better IAQ.

Verification instrumental in establishing trust as buildings reopen

While The Music Center prepares for reopening after an extended period of disruption due to COVID-19, the organization’s management and its operations team feel confident that their efforts to ensure healthier IAQ will help artists, patrons and employees feel safer as they return to support and experience the arts.

“Suddenly, the efforts we have made over 25 years to ensure healthier IAQ are paying off. We were taking steps to offer superior indoor environmental quality before many even understood the importance of it. The pandemic has established a heightened standard for indoor air quality, and we are proud to be in a position to provide leadership in this area. The UL Verified Healthy Building Mark for Indoor Air showcases the fact that The Music Center has prioritized healthy indoor environments for years.”

  • Howard Sherman
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • The Music Center
The Music Center's Mark Taper Forum (credit The Music Center)
The Music Center's Mark Taper Forum (credit The Music Center)

With the Verification of six facilities, including all four theaters — Walt Disney Concert Hall, Ahmanson Theatre, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and Mark Taper Forum—in addition to offices in Grand Park at 200 North Grand Avenue and on 601 West Temple Street, The Music Center sets the stage for indoor spaces with good indoor air quality as patrons, artists and employees return to enjoy The Music Center venues.

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