Building Restoration Video on Old Parkland Hospital

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Sustainable Building Restoration | Rare when an old building of character sits on enough land for historic restoration, adaptive reuse & new structures creating a campus winning the AIA Dallas Sustainability Award for green building design and energy conservation.Building Restoration Video on Old Parkland Hospital 

[Excerpts from video...]

It’s a rare thing when an old building of character is sitting on enough land that one can do the expansion and adaptive reuse of that building and then add other structures to really create a campus. 

Before the building was finished, the project was awarded a sustainability award.  The AIA chapter here in Dallas has a design awards program annually, and they started a new award called the sustainability award to really award a project that could hold up as an example of building green or building thoughtfully in this growing movement of sustainable development.  They selected Old Parkland and said, first of all, the greenest building is one that was already here, so here's somebody who’s been a good steward of an existing building, and the design work that was done was admirable. 

That was a wonderful award to Crow Holdings and Good Fulton & Farrell.  A county hospital was a functional place.  It wasn’t a luxurious place, so you stepped in a lobby that didn’t particularly have high ceilings.  There wasn’t a sense of arrival that was befitting what the company should have, so Harlan (Crow) suggested, well, gee, maybe what we need to do is remove some of the second floor area. 

You step in and you look up.  Let's create a two-story high space, and that'll feel better.  That’s the right scale for a building of this size.  Certainly, nothing like that existed in the building, so here's a case where we’re not doing an accurate historic restoration.  We're adapting the building. 

When it came down to it, they removed a segment of the floor, and the column that went from the first floor to the second floor, and the column that went from the second floor up to the roof were offset from each other.  When we tore the floor out, you’ve got this column that goes up and goes over and goes up, and we all scratched our heads and said, “Now what are we going to do?”  So the column’s going to have to get bigger.  We had to wrap it with a wrapper that was big enough to cover the column over here and the column over here, so things like that were the challenges.

Again, nobody wanted to create a parking structure that everybody could see, and we certainly didn’t want surface parking, so the idea was to excavate one floor lower than the basement level of this building.  Well, when you go to dig out still another ten, eleven, twelve feet down, you start to mess with the foundation that underpins the building, so as they very carefully would dig out, they'd have to work very diligently to shore up and underpin the foundation for the building, and that was something that would make anybody nervous.  It makes the architect, the structural engineer, the contractor, and the owner all a little nervous.  Is this going well?  And it did.  The contractor did a great job.

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