Phased Rehabilitation of Little Theatre Debuted

March 20th, 2018 · News

On Thursday of last week, March 17, 2019 we presented our design for a major two-phase rehabilitation and restoration of the historic Little Theatre to a group of patrons inside the theatre itself. The Little Theatre, at 240 East Avenue in Rochester, was built in 1929 was one of approximately 39 “Little Cinemas” established across the country from 1925-1930. These Little Cinemas were the antithesis of the vast Movie Palaces; they rejected mainstream movies from Hollywood and instead exclusively focused on the presentation of independent, foreign, and art films within their intimate and often austere theaters of less than 500 seats. Many of the Little Cinemas occupied renovated or repurposed live theatres, but a small number of them were purpose-built like Rochester’s Little Theatre. From our research conducted as part of an earlier planning project with The Little, we were able to determine that of all of the Little Cinemas across the nation, the only one still in existence and operating as originally intended is The Little Theatre here in Rochester!

Phase 1 of the project, scheduled for completion this year, focuses on a comprehensive rehabilitation of the auditorium which includes replacing all of the existing seating, constructing a full-width stage, replacing and upgrading of all electrical systems, and replacing all existing finishes; and the construction of a small rear addition coordinated with enclosing an existing alleyway to provide a rear entrance and accessible connection to the new stage.

Phase 2 of the project, scheduled for completion in 2019, focuses on a comprehensive rehabilitation of the remainder of the building including: repairing and restoring all exterior components of the primary facade of the building; rehabilitating the basement by updating all mechanical/electrical services and kitchen facilities, reconfiguring storage rooms, bathrooms and lounge spaces, and providing a green room for performers; rehabilitating the first floor by combining the existing central lobby with the two adjacent storefronts to accommodate enlarged concessions and cafe/reception areas, installing an elevator to provide accessibility to all levels of the building, and restoring the current concessions area into an open auditorium lobby/lounge; rehabilitating the second floor by renewing all finishes, providing accessible toilet facilities, reconfiguring office and storage ares, and creating a large green room facility for preformers.

Bero Architecture PLLC is honored to be working with WXXI and The Little Theatre Film Society on their signature historic building that has served as an anchor and cultural icon in Rochester for nearly 90 years. We hope that the community shares in our collective excitement over this major investment into the legacy of “America’s Oldest Art-House Cinema”!

For more information on “The Little Big Picture” campaign and the project refer to the press release on The Little’s website and the news articles covering the project:
+ The Little Theatre Blog
+ The Democrat and Chronicle
+ City Newspaper
+ WXXI News


Charlotte – Genesee Lighthouse Pops Its Top

February 12th, 2018 · News

The Charlotte – Genesee Lighthouse Historical Society, one of our oldest and most unique clients, has been on a marathon of restoration and repair projects in the past few years at the Keeper’s House and 1822 Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse. Two summers ago, we assisted the CGLHS with the burying of utility lines, and reconstruction of the shutters, storm windows, and screens for the primary (south) facade of the Keeper’s House. Last summer the medina stone steps and front door with transoms were restored and reconstructed respectively further restoring character defining features of the exterior of the Keeper’s House.

This year Bero Architecture is assisting the CGLHS with the truly exciting project of directing repairs and restoration efforts to the lantern room its cast iron platform, and masonry base at the top of the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse. As part of the restoration an exacting reproduction of the original Fourth Order Freznel lens will be installed in the lantern room following the repair and partial reconstruction of the lantern room. In order to complete the repairs to the masonry base beneath the cast iron platform upon which the lamp room sits and to install the reproduction Freznel lens, the lantern room and cast iron platform had to be temporarily removed via crane. It certainly is a rare opportunity to capture the lighthouse in such a physical state, and so we made sure to stop by and document the process.

We look forward to the conclusion of the work when the lantern of the lighthouse will be restored to much as it appeared before its removal in 1884.


St. James Church Phases 1, 2, and 4 Nearing Completion

October 20th, 2015 · News

Phases 1, 2, and 4 of the interior rehabilitation and restoration of the elaborate patterned slate roof at St. James Episcopal Church in Skaneateles are nearing completion. The projects, based on a Master Plan we developed with the parish over a two year process, include rehabilitation of the basement gathering space and chapel, HVAC and mechanical system upgrades, substantial rehabilitation of the nave and sanctuary including a new entry, new flooring, decorative scheme, and expanded altar and chancel space. The roofing replacement work, Phase 1 of the Master Plan, includes full restoration of the main slate roof and elaborate sheet metal work (stamped dentils, shaped copings and cornices).

We are grateful for all of the hard work of our collaborative project teams of St. James Episcopal Parish,  Hayner Hoyt Construction, Easton Specialties, and Bero Architecture PLLC thus far which will guide these two large and complicated projects to their successful completion before the end of the year.


United Church of Canandaigua Organ Installation

April 6th, 2015 · News>>On The Boards

Bero Architecture assisted The United Church of Canandaigua with the rehabilitation of their altar, chancel, blower room, and pipe chambers. Original paneled doors, railing and wainscot details present in other areas of the church were used as inspiration for the rehabilitation of the chancel and new altar space. A new three manual and pedal forty rank organ for the church was designed and installed by Parsons Pipe Organ Builders. It is always a pleasure to work with Ric Parsons and his talented crew, and is an especially rare privilege to work with them on a completely new organ project.

When we visited the church at the end of last month, the pipe chambers were nearing completion. They were to begin installation of the pipes within the following week. The custom console and pipe facades were meticulously fabricated and finished in Parson’s shop and were on site awaiting installation. Details adapted from the existing roof beams and decorative stenciling allow the organ to appear as if it had always been part of the church.

We look forward to seeing and hearing the finished organ in May!

Bero Architecture Founders, John and Cheryl Bero, Have Retired

January 5th, 2015 · News

John and Cheryl Bero have officially announced their retirement. John’s retirement took effect at the end of the year and Cheryl will fully retire at the end of February. Although their retirement has been expected, we had not been sure when until mid-December. John established the firm in 1976 and managed it with Cheryl’s help until 2008. John dedicated his architectural career to thorough, meticulous, and meaningful preservation of historic structures (not to mention good grammar!). His time and talent has left an indelible mark on the historic fabric of the built environment in the greater Rochester region and beyond. We are grateful for the privilege to have learned from and worked together with John and Cheryl over the past 38 years. We wish John and Cheryl all the best for a happy and fulfilling retirement.

John Page, Virginia Searl, Richard Osgood, Jennifer Ahrens, Mary Mitchell, Lindsay Yoder, Katie Comeau, Chris Brandt

John’s official letter of retirement can be read below:













Boynton House Rehabilitation Receives State Award

August 22nd, 2014 · News

We are pleased that the New York State AIA has announced that the Boynton House Rehabilitation was selected to receive a 2014 Citation for Design Award.

Award Recipients for the 2014 New York State AIA Design Awards were chosen from a pool of three-hundred submissions by a jury of national architectural practitioners and educators. We are excited to be this year’s only upstate architectural firm to receive a NYS AIA design award. The awards ceremony and NYS AIA annual meeting and gala will be held in Saratoga Springs October 9th through 11th.


Most Holy Trinity Church Roofing Replacement – Phase 1 is Complete

August 19th, 2014 · News>>On The Boards


Phase 1 – Towers Roofing Replacement at Most Holy Trinity roman Catholic Church in Webster is nearing completion. The project included interior and exterior masonry repairs, repair and refinishing of exterior woodwork, and repairs to stained glass windows in addition to full replacement of the slate roofing system and sheet metal finials. The finials were fabricated, gilded and installed from a lift by the team at Easton Specialties. We were able to document the finial installation  and photograph the completed towers from the lift at completion.


Tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Boynton House

July 2nd, 2014 · News
John Page speaking along with, Jean France, Fran Consentino, Jane Parker and Mark Bayer
John Page speaking along with, Jean France, Fran Consentino, Jane Parker and Mark Bayer
On June 14, 2014, we had the honor in partnering with the Rochester chapter of the AIA and the Landmark Society of Western New York in hosting a house tour at the Boynton house. The tour was an excellent opportunity for local architects to see Frank Lloyd Wright’s only work in Rochester and was part of the continuing education program for the AIA.

The two-and-a-half hour event included a guided tour of the garden landscaping and lily pond, the pergola and garage additions, the first floor and restored veranda, and the basement including interpretive displays. As the tour progressed through the house, guests were treated to the history of each space and a brief synopsis of the difficulties that were faced during the renovation process. While not on the tour, guests were treated to refreshments in the garden courtyard.


George Eastman House Survey & Condition Report

June 4th, 2014 · News>>On The Boards

 Bero Architecture PLLC has been awarded the contract for a survey and condition report on the George Eastman House and Garden Structures.  The condition report will prioritize areas of critical repairs, long-term maintenance and suggested improvements to this National Historic Landmark building and grounds.  The survey and condition report are being funded by a grant through the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council and the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation through Title 9 of the Environmental Protection Act of 1983.

Press Release

Boynton House Rehabilitation Receives Award

May 19th, 2014 · News
Click for larger image
Click for larger image
We are honored to receive an AIA Rochester 2014 Design Excellence Grand Honor Award for the Boynton House Rehabilitation.

Winners of the AIA Rochester’s annual Design Excellence Awards are chosen by a jury of national architectural professionals, who review presentations submitted by are architecture firms nominating their recent projects. These awards, along with photography, scholarship and the Mayor’s award are announced at a special reception, held this year on April 25th.