Downtown Dallas is in the midst of a comprehensive revitalization effort that has brought support from various developers, property owners and retailers, and is being fueled by organizations such as the Central Dallas Association, the Downtown Improvement District and the Dallas Downtown Partnership. The Dallas Downtown Partnership is dedicated to the, “redevelopment and revitalization of the Main Street District by creating a vibrant, sustainable and prosperous environment in which to work, live, shop, dine and play everyday.”

Residential and retail growth is a major building block leading the revitalization of downtown Dallas. Main Street, which once served as the principle retail district in Dallas , is once again becoming home to a growing base of upscale restaurants and bars as well as retailers.
And there is tremendous opportunity for continual growth with approximately 300,000 – 450,000 sq. ft. of potential retail space located in both new and existing buildings, many of which date back to the early 1900s.

Chamberlin currently has a small army of construction workers restoring the envelopes of these older buildings getting them ready for residential and retail use. Since November of 2004, Chamberlin has begun work on nearly $6,000,000 worth of waterproofing and renovation projects in downtown with another $2,000,000 (and counting) to begin this fall. To say that the Chamberlin team has been busy is an understatement. In fact, the current workload has made it necessary for the operations management team to relocate to a downtown office suite at 1700 Commerce St. “This allows us to have closer management of each project as well as accessibility for our clients,” said Project Manager Bryan Payne. In addition to Payne, the downtown project management team is Project Coordinator Shauna Schultz and Superintendents Paul Watson, Pete Klein, Joe Kuchta and Charlie Lastowski. The following is an overview of some the projects that the Chamberlin team is currently working on or has recently completed in downtown Dallas. 

Interurban Building
1500 Jackson St.
Owner: Dallas Interurban, Ltd.
Architect: Merriman Associates/Architects, Inc.
General Contractor: Andres Construction
Contract Amount: $150,000 (approx.)

In November 2004, construction began on the redevelopment of the eight-story Interurban Building . The development transformed the building into 134 residential apartment units along with downtown’s first, and highly publicized, urban supermarket on the ground level. Chamberlin installed sheet waterproofing, joint sealants and damproofing on the low-rise apartment building and replaced the existing roof with a Modified Bitumen system. “This project, which is across the street from the recently renovated Dallas Power and Light Buildings , positioned Chamberlin as the preferred contractor for the restoration projects that followed,” said Terry Maitland, Waterproofing & Caulking Estimating Manager.

Gulf States
1415 Main St.
Owner: Spectrum Properties
Architect: Merriman Associates/Architects, Inc.
General Contractor: Key Construction
Contract Amount: $750,000 (approx.)

Conversion of this 1920s era historic hotel into residential lofts began this spring. Since the building is applying for national registration as a historical landmark, special consideration had to be used when cleaning and restoring the exterior. Aspects that make up the building''s historic character were retained and preserved in the process of making changes for a new use. To protect historic materials and exterior features of the building, Chamberlin restored the brick façade with low-level pressure washing. And, rather than using a machine grinder, deteriorated grout was removed with a chisel and hammer. Joint sealants and a window wet glazing assembly were also added to seal the building envelope.

Plaza & Towers 1 & 2
308 S. Akard St.
Owner: Southwestern Bell
Architect: Conley Design Group, Inc.
General Contractors: Phillips / May Corp. / HCB JT VTR
Contract Amount: $1,800,000 (approx.)

Chamberlin originally installed the joint sealants on SBC Towers 1 & 2 and the plaza when they were first constructed over 23 years ago and has performed exterior leak repair work on them over the past three years. The time came this past summer, after various waterproofing leak repairs, to clean and re-caulk the travertine panels, windows and door perimeters. After completing an extensive interviewing and bid process, Chamberlin was chosen as SBC’s preferred contractor for the project because of their competitive price, proven capabilities and outstanding performance record.

Chamberlin is in the midst of removing and replacing over 135 miles of expansion and control joints using over 7,500 gallons of silicone sealant. Since the timeline is so short, a 50-plus person crew is working on 15 swing stages and a 60 ft. man-lift that surround the 38- and 14-story towers. Towers 1 & 2 will be complete by the end of this year, performing in six months what normally takes 14 to 18 months. Work will then continue on SBC Tower 4.

J. Erik Jonsson Central Library
1515 Young St.
Owner: City of Dallas
Acrhitect: Conley Design Group, Inc.
General Contractor: Chamberlin Dallas, LTD
Contract Amount: $2,300,000 (approx.)

Chamberlin began working on the complete exterior renovation of the plaza, wall and roof systems of this architecturally unique downtown library in July, 2005. As the general contractor of the project, Chamberlin is responsible for a long list of building envelope renovation items: replacing the roofing system; installing new metal flashings; re-caulking the entire building including precast panels, windows and door perimeters; concrete precast repair; removing and re-waterproofing the pedestrian plaza and planters; re-paving the plaza; removing and replacing sidewalks to make room for a new storm drainage system; installing new landscaping and irrigation system.

To remove the plaza and sidewalks, jackhammers must be used. This is can be quite a nuisance to the patrons and librarians that hold their silence sacred. But, the librarians that work on the basement floors below the loud construction have taken to wearing earmuffs for the sake of progress.

County Underground Parking Garage
Main at Market St.
Owner: Dallas County
Architect: J.E. Jacobs
General Contractor: Thos. S. Byrne
Contract Amount: $300,000 (approx.)

If you work in or have been to downtown Dallas lately, you may have noticed a large hole in the ground on the corner of Main and Market Streets where the Dallas County Historical Plaza once helmed. This hole is on its way to becoming a four-story underground parking garage that will include a pedestrian tunnel connecting to the adjacent court building. Since the garage is below-grade, the construction specifications called for W.R. Grace Preprufe Waterproofing System, of which Chamberlin is a licensed, certified applicator. Joint sealants and traffic coatings will also be installed on the garage, which is scheduled to be complete this winter.

And the work goes on…
Projects under contract for Chamberlin to start later this year include the historical restoration of 1530 Main and Bryan St. Lofts. 1530 Main will be transformed into the Joule Urban Resort, a 125-room boutique hotel with first floor retail space. Also, ground will break soon on 1526 Main , which will attach to 1530. Bryan St. Lofts will be converted from a two-story building into a four-story loft apartment complex.

Each individual project has its own unique challenges. Several of the projects have tight schedules and all have significant safety considerations. However, the Chamberlin crew is successfully performing their work within the heart of the Dallas central business district without impeding the heavy pedestrian and vehicular traffic. This can be attributed to Chamberlin’s manpower, experience and drive to deliver more on each project that is undertaken. “Chamberlin is excited to be a part of the restoration of Dallas ’ central business district,” said David Neal, Chamberlin Vice President. “This area is the heart of our city, and we take pride in being a part of renovating it for the future.”