Lauridsen Opera Center (Indianola)

Des Moines Metro Opera Lauridsen Opera Center

2020 Preservation at Its Best: Adaptive Reuse

As one of Iowa’s premier performing arts organizations, Des Moines Metro Opera (DMMO) embarked on a $3.5 million dollar campaign to restore and expand the National Register of Historic Places Carnegie Library they call home. The opera had maintained the building’s historic integrity. Working with OPN Architects created a new design that not only preserves the original library, but improves flow and productivity through modern workspaces and social areas, including a kitchen and practice space for visiting performers, while allowing ample room for storage, additional restrooms, ADA accessibility and an elevator. 

Lauridsen Opera Center addition

Des Moines Metro Opera has a long-standing relationship with their community in Indianola. The 4,000 square-foot addition and renovation projects were funded through the organization, individual donations and benefitted from historic tax credits. The project allows DMMO to continue to make an impact in their community, respecting their past and paying homage to their forward-thinking vision.

Preservation Iowa’s two most visible programs are Iowa’s Most Endangered and Preservation at Its Best. These two programs work well together because being listed as Most Endangered often times leads to awareness, a preservation effort, and a high-quality, award winning project.

The full list of Preservation Iowa’s 2020 Preservation at its Best award winners includes: