Paramount Theatre

Oakland, CA



     The beautiful Paramount Theatre in Oakland features an elaborate ceiling with an ornate suspended metal lighting grid with a plaster ceiling above, and ornamental plaster at the perimeter. The ceiling system was essentially unbraced and, therefore, vulnerable to damage from seismic movement. 

   A unique bracing system was developed that incorporated strong, yet inconspicuous bracing for the metal lighting grid, and lightweight, but sturdy bracing for the plaster ceiling. The challenges included making the metal grid bracing virtually invisible from below, and providing steel framing for the plaster ceiling bracing that could be brought up through small narrow stairs and passageways. The plaster ceiling bracing incorporated built-up metal beams and braces composed of multiple metal studs that were fit together within the attic space. All connections to the existing steel frame structure were made with specialized clamp devices to avoid welding and drilling. All new steel was either bolted or screwed together in place. 


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