Historic buildings give communities character, a sense of place and a connection to the past. Landmark renovations give owners a sense of pride in preserving a building’s history while adding modern amenities.
Distinctive design detailing, decorative facades, unusual glasswork, and valuable materials such as heart pine, marble or old brick are often found in historic buildings.
"Working on projects that breathe new life into a historic structure is highly rewarding. You're bound to find surprises along the way, but with proper planning and a little bit of creativity, you can make those a plus!" exclaims Andy Smedberg, Superintendent for C.D. Smith.
Theater to Performance Center
MSO'S BRADLEY SYMPHONY CENTER | MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN
The Wisconsin Historical Society honored the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra as the recipient of the 2021 Historic Restoration Award for the restoration of the Warner Art Deco skyscraper. The restoration involved relocating a fragile historical exterior wall and thorough cleaning and repairing or replacement of broken or missing elements in the interior spaces. Terrazzo and stone decorative staircases in the lobby and theater were returned to their original forms. Lobby chandeliers, mirrors, metalwork and leafed/glazed finished were restored. Murals, painted by the famous Louis Grell, were carefully cleaned. The updated theater features new seats for comfortably accommodating guests while making them feel like they're going back to the 1930s.
Rising from the Ashes
CAMP VISTA CHAPEL | CAMPBELLSPORT, WISCONSIN
A massive fire devastated Camp Vista's beloved chapel on October 24, 2018. Following the chapel's destruction, its charred remains evoked deep sadness and a profound sense of loss from the surrounding community. But signs of hope were quick to follow. Camp Vista Chapel was reconstructed on the footprint of the original chapel. The new chapel features open, exposed wood beams in the sanctuary with stone wall accents and ample natural lighting, creating a bright and natural space for the congregation to worship. A choir loft above the pews allows for an ideal acoustic environment. Additionally, a full kitchen and fellowship hall provide space for large group gatherings.
Elevating the Student Experience
UW-MADISON SELLERY HALL | MADISON, WISCONSIN
Sellery Hall student housing on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus is undergoing a significant renovation (in 2022) with an additional center tower being constructed, connecting the two existing towers. C.D. Smith Construction was selected as the general contractor for this 36-month-long project and has been active on the job since June 2020. Much of the build was constructed with students onsite. As a floor is completed, it is turned over to the University, and a shift begins, moving students on an occupied floor into the recently finished and remodeled floor. Once the swap occurs, crews enter the now unoccupied floor and the remodeling process begins again.
Historic Arches & Matching Brick
ST. FRANCIS MONASTERY RENOVATION AND ADDITION | MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN
In 2020, construction began on a two-part project on Vel R Phillips Avenue in Milwaukee. This first phase was a 30,000 SF restoration of the 145-year-old St. Francis Monastery. The second was a 16,000 SF addition of the adjacent St. Francis of Assisi Parish Center. During the project, Superintendent Clint Bindrich adapted the plans to accommodate the Capuchins' request for exposing historic arches during the elevator fitting. They also asked that the brick on the new addition match the existing exterior facades. The construction team was able to carefully demo the interior brick for salvaging and repurposing on the exterior to fulfill the request.
School to Apartment
WHITNEY SCHOOL LOFTS | GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN
Built in 1918, Whitney School is a neo-classical revival-style building listed on the National Register of Historic Places. After sitting vacant for several years, in 2019, the 39,339 SF building was brought back to life as Whitney School Lofts, a 23-unit apartment complex. C.D. Smith converted this century-old building into a modern loft with old-school charm. Exterior facade and interior deco molding have been restored to like-new conditions. Floor-to-ceiling windows complement 12-foot ceilings. Original wood floors, limestone accents and subway tile bring unique character throughout the building.
Candy Factory to Hotel
THE CHARMANT HOTEL | LA CROSSE, WISCONSIN
(Photo courtesy of The Charmant Hotel)
Once the home of the Funke Candy Factory, the 1890s building was converted into a luxury boutique hotel. Architectural details of the original building were preserved, including maple wood flooring, wood beams and exposed brick. Some say these materials still emanate the sweet smell of candy, adding to the charm of this La Crosse landmark. Outdoor dining, rooftop terrace, meeting room, board room and 69 luxury rooms welcome guests year-round.
Warehouse to Office Space
GLOBAL WATER CENTER | MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN
In 2013, The Water Council sought a new location for its Global Water Center, a facility housing research labs and office space for numerous water-related companies. Looking to relocate to Milwaukee's Water Technology District, they identified a 105-year-old, seven-story, 98,000 SF abandoned warehouse in Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood to renovate. In addition to providing construction services on the project, C.D. Smith served as a development partner.
Canning Company to Mixed-Use
THE RAIL YARD INNOVATION DISTRICT BUILDING R | GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN
The Rail Yard Innovation District of Green Bay is transforming a once bleak and desolate neighborhood into a vibrant destination for people to work, play, eat and live. The site was previously home to Larsen Canning Co. The historic rehabilitation project transformed a cold storage facility into a multi-tenant building for businesses and organizations.
"C.D. Smith takes great pride in restoration and renovation projects. They are challenging, rewarding to work on and often become the gems of the communities where they stand." Todd Wunderlich, Project Manager, C.D. Smith Construction
Beneath the Hard Hat® Magazine offers an intimate look at the people and stories that make C.D. Smith Construction WHO WE ARE.
We highlight historic achievements, industry records and project updates infused with the latest news for building community by sharing insights on integrated solutions for safely delivering superior spaces where people work, play, live, learn, heal, create, worship and serve.
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