UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – A design by Penn State architecture student Nicholas Fudali has been selected to become the look of the new East Coast Music Hall of Fame (ECMHOF) Museum in Wildwood, New Jersey.
Fudali’s winning design was unanimously chosen by the ECMHOF board of directors following an open call for proposals. According to Bill Grieco, vice president of the organization, Fudali’s renderings made it to the short list of three finalists and was the only proposal submitted by a student. A number of architectural drawings were submitted but, according to Grieco, most of them seemed “too simple or too flashy in design.”
Fudali first learned about the development of the new museum on Facebook and was encouraged by Grieco, who is a family friend, to submit his own renderings.
“My design was inspired by the style already used by the ECMHOF board. They are really zeroing in on a retro aesthetic which New Jersey’s music culture stems from,” explained Fudali, who is a native of East Brunswick, New Jersey. “My goal was to stay true to the retro feel and translate it into a three-dimensional representation.”
To achieve his vision, Fudali incorporated elements such as neon tube lights which run around the roof overhang, a vinyl record-inspired entrance to create a memorable first impression of the building experience, and a large music note which serves as a sign and architectural symbol of the building.
“Nick’s design is clean and simple, and really stood out from the beginning. The building looks inviting and resembles a theater, which is fitting since we are celebrating artists and performers,” he said. “It is just amazing. Nick is incredibly talented and has exceptional vision, which will take him far.”
Fudali, who is interning this summer with Nastasi Architects in Hoboken, New Jersey, says he is honored to have had his design selected. He also expressed his gratitude to the entire EMHOF board, and Grieco specifically, for the opportunity to submit his vision.
“I have pursued this profession to create impactful designs and this is such an exciting project to get me started,” he added.
Grieco says he anticipates construction of the building, which will also serve as the organization’s world headquarters, to begin by the end of the year with an expected opening in summer 2020. At that time, the EMCHOF – which celebrates the music of the 1950s, 60s and 70s – will be honoring its first class of inductees, including Connie Francis, Tony Orlando, Bobby Rydell, Frankie Avalon and Chubby Checker.
If all goes as planned, the building will open shortly after Fudali graduates from Penn State with his B.Arch. degree in May 2020.