Marble Hall and Marble Pavilion at Lakeshore Park

Lakeshore Park comprises 185 acres in the heart of Knoxville, Tennessee, along the Tennessee River and provides countless opportunities for visitors to play, rest and relax while providing views of the Great Smoky Mountains. The park draws thousands of visitors each year to experience its rolling hills, river and mountain views and historic overlooks.

Marble Hall, originally constructed in 1958, served as a chapel for Eastern State Psychiatric Hospital. Much of the site had been inaccessible to the public until Lakeshore Mental Health Institute, formerly known as Eastern State, began to downsize, and the City of Knoxville acquired the land to create the park.

During research into how the public wanted to use the land and structures, the conceptual potential for Marble Hall evolved from an enclosed private venue to a public pavilion. Johnson Architecture maintained its classic architectural identity while peeling away part of the skin to allow the public to experience its simple elegance. The existing Tennessee marble cladding remained, as well as its structural wooden frame and ceiling and the intricate rose window. New restrooms carved from existing space support the multipurpose area.

Marble Pavilion, designed on an axis with the existing chapel, features a simple material palette reflective of its counterpart: Tennessee marble columns, simple steel frame and triumphal arch to denote the entry. The project also included a new restroom facility.

Lakeshore Park serves as a showcase for Knoxville’s public recreation opportunities, and the renovation of Marble Hall and addition of Marble Pavilion enhance the park’s sense of place.


Keep Knoxville Beautiful Orchids Award for Outdoor Space, 2018
East Tennessee Historical Society Award of Distinction, 2018
Knox Heritage East Tennessee Preservation Award, 2018
AIA East Tennessee Merit Award for renovation and restoration, 2020

Johnson Architecture is a design firm that provides architecture, planning, and full in-house interior design services for projects of all types including commercial, education, entertainment, government, industrial, medical, residential, restaurant and spiritual.

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