Historic Preservation

February 1, 2016

Historic Preservation of Buildings

Historic buildings contribute significantly to the character of a city, and public officials have recognized that these structures enhance the identity and uniqueness of the community.

Preservation is a key strategy for economic development, urban revitalization and sustainable development. Because historic buildings are often constructed of high-quality materials no longer available, renovation often results in significant cost-savings over using resources for a new structure. Halff helps cities and agencies preserve their unique history and culture through historic preservation.

Case Study – White Rock Pump Station

White Rock Pump Station was designed in 1910 by the City of Dallas, and construction was completed with the opening of White Rock Lake inApril 1911. This Renaissance Revival style facility served as the second pumping station for the City of Dallas and began dispensing chlorinated water to residents in 1913. In 1929, the lake ceased to be used as a water supply (except for a few years during the drought of the 1950s).The facility has been in use as Dallas Water Utilities’ Water OperationsControl Center since 1985 when it underwent a major building renovation and exterior restoration. In 2000, the exterior was again restored to maintain the masonry, windows and doors that had deteriorated since 1985.

In 2011, Halff was engaged to perform an exterior envelope assessment to address re-roofing the building, window replacement, wood door repair, brick masonry and terra-cotta restoration and below-grade waterproofing. Interior restoration included updating the lighting and finishes and cleaning brick masonry in the historic pump room, which is being used as a meeting and community room.

Because White Rock Pump Station was designated as a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1989, Halff was required to notify and coordinate with the Texas Historical Commission (THC) and the City of Dallas Planning Staff and Landmark Commission for the exterior restoration. Halff received guidance and approval from THC concerning acceptable materials for window replacement and masonry restoration. Several sustainable design features were included, such as increasing the roof insulation to exceed the current Energy Code, new high-efficiency LED accent lighting and HID high-bay lighting with electronic energy-saving ballasts. This $1.05 million project also improved the exterior, eliminating issues that were causing deterioration of the building envelope and with proper maintenance ensuring preservation of this important building.

Halff’s Commitment to Historic Preservation

Halff provides full architectural services with a specialization in the restoration, adaptive use and architectural preservation of historic buildings. We have a broad base of experience and knowledge in preservation planning, research and analysis, architectural history, materials science and government standards and regulations. We approach the preservation of sites and buildings as conservators of the built environment with the intent of maintaining as much historic fabric as possible while providing design solutions that meet our client’s goals for the building’s long-term continued use.

Halff’s Personnel and Resources

Halff is committed to helping owners of historic properties provide for the stewardship and legacy of their buildings through the expertise of key personnel including Allen Terrell, AIA, PE, LEED AP, and Matthew Frame, historic architecture preservation specialist. Allen is a dedicated preservation architect. During his 17 years at Halff, he has performed numerous historic preservation projects including the restoration and adaptive re-use of the 1936 Aquarium at Fair Park for the City of Dallas, restoration and preservation of historic Ranger gas station on the Old Bankhead Highway for TxDOT and the restoration of 14 buildings at the historic Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio. Allen balances the conservation of historic resources with modern-day safety, function and aesthetic goals. Matthew is a historic architecture preservation specialist with a master’s degree in architecture with a Certificate in Historic Preservation from Texas Tech University. Since 2013, he has contributed to all of Halff’s historic preservation and cultural resources projects.

The Take-Away

Water utilities have a vested stake in preserving current structures because maintaining a building is far more economical than building a new one. That becomes even more important when a historic building is involved. Halff can help you save money in the long run by investing in your existing infrastructure. Halff has a multi-disciplined team of professionals who work together to help clients achieve long-lasting results and the greatest value for our clients’ investments. If Halff Associates can assist your team, please call Executive Vice President Jessica Baker, PE, CFM, PMP, at (214) 217-6692.