Each year the Kansas Preservation Alliance, Inc. recognizes exemplary efforts in historic preservation across the state of Kansas. The 2014 Awards for Excellence were presented May 9 at the Old Supreme Court in the Kansas Statehouse in Topeka. The restoration of the State Capitol building was recipient of first place. Second place went to Manweiler Chevrolet of Hoisington.
The following projects to receive awards:
•Kansas Statehouse Preservation & Restoration, Kansas State Capitol, Topeka - 1st place Medallion Award for Rehabilitation
In 1866, the Kansas Legislature authorized the construction of the Kansas Statehouse. Architect John G. Haskell of Lawrence was selected as the first Statehouse Architect, and on October 17, 1866, the cornerstone of the East Wing was laid. Nearly 37 years later in June of 1903, the
building was complete. Almost a century later, the restoration project began in 1999.
From the new parking garage all the way up to the new copper dome, nearly every part of the building was touched over the course of the phased 14-year project. On Kansas Day, Jan. 29, 2014, the restored Kansas Statehouse was officially opened for its next hundred years of service as “the people’s house.”
•Rehabilitation of Manweiler Chevrolet Dealership, Manweiler-Maupin Chevrolet, Hoisington - 2nd Place Medallion Award for Rehabilitation
Following the bankruptcy of General Motors in 2009, hundreds of small town dealerships closed after losing their franchise agreements. Multi-generational Manweiler Chevrolet of rural Hoisington, founded in 1928, was spared in the cuts and asked to join the New GM.
When Manweiler signed a renewed contract with GM in 2010, he received assistance from GM to incorporate a set of design guidelines for a new uniform corporate image that would be applied to the 1944 Streamlined Art Moderne downtown dealership. By working with GM, Manweiler Chevrolet developed a plan that GM approved to meet the modem dealership requirements for the building in a way that would not obliterate its historic character, and allow the dealership to remain in the city’s downtown.
•Kansas Preservation Alliance· Gish Apartments, Amos Gish Building, El Dorado - 3rd Place Medallion Award
In 1917, at the height of the oil boom in El Dorado, veterinarian Amos H. Gish commissioned a new building at 317-319 S. Main that would serve as auto dealership, livery stable, veterinary clinic, and apartments. The building’s significance comes not only from the role it played in the rapid development and growth of EI Dorado but also that it serves as a rare example of the first-generation purpose-built auto dealership. The preservation effort began with removing the metal awning and metal panels covering the historic transom windows on the storefront facade, and reconstructing the storefront to match the historic appearance, including the two large double doors that allowed vehicles to be moved in and out of the showroom. Inside, historic finishes were restored and the 2nd floor apartments were brought up to 21st century living standards while complementing the historic character of the building.
•Leonidas W. Coleman Furnished Rooms, Lawrence - 4th Place Medallion Award
This residence was built in 1911 by Harriet E. Tanner, an early Lawrence residential designer and mother of Edward Tanner, the architect for much of the Country Club Plaza in Kansas City.
L. W. Coleman purchased the property in 1913, and he and his wife were the proprietors of furnished rooms at the site until 1917. From then until today, the building went through several different lives. The most significant feature of the rehabilitation effort was the reconstruction of the front porch to match the original, allowing the building to become contributing to the Hancock Historic District. The house now stands to serve once again as it did originally, surviving development pressure in the neighborhood to provide furnished rooms available to KU students.
•Building 55 Renovations, Fort Leavenworth Post Hospital/Hospital Corp Barracks, Fort Leavenworth - 5th Place Honor Award
Originally built as the second Post Hospital in 1883, Building 55 served the medical needs of a growing military post for nearly 20 years. With the construction of a new hospital in 1902, the building subsequently went through many different uses. The building managed to retain some of its original plaster walls and ceilings, which were retained and restored as part of the rehabilitation. The original volumes of space in the building were recreated, and the original clerestory windows were uncovered to provide natural daylight. The exterior of the building retained a high level of historical integrity throughout its numerous lives. The porches on the east, west, and south appeared to match those in historic photographs and therefore were retained.
•Ridge Top Apartments Rehabilitation, Western Branch, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers Domiciliary Buildings 1, 2, 3, 4, & 61, Leavenworth - 6th Place Honor Award
The Western Branch of the National Home for Disabled Veterans was founded by Congress in 1885 as an act of a grateful public to provide a hospital, chapel, mess hall, recreation hall, and domiciliary buildings for veterans of the Civil War, with grounds furnished with bandstands,
fountains, and gardens. Over time, an extensive campus was constructed, and in 1930 was incorporated into the new Department of Veterans Affairs. The Ridge Top Apartments rehabilitation project adapted domiciliary buildings 1 through 4 - the first constructed at the
Western Branch in 1866 - into one- and two-bedroom apartments for low-income, veteran transitional housing. Building 61, a two-story brick house, was restored as a single-family rental house, with a renovated kitchen and new mechanical and electrical systems.
•Horace Mann Lofts, Horace Mann Elementary School, Kansas City - 7th Place Honor Award
Horace Mann Elementary School was built in 1909, designed by William W. Rose, the architect for the Kansas City, Kansas School District. Built during the height of the Progressive Era, the Classical Revival styled building includes features of the era’s education reforms, like tall windows for plenty of natural daylight, and art, music, kindergarten, and physical activity spaces.
The building functioned as an elementary school until 1939, then as the Kansas City Junior College until 1968. The historic site, masonry exterior, and window design were all retained and restored. Inside, the original double-loaded corridor school layout was maintained, with the new apartments occupying the original classroom spaces. The design philosophy minimized contact with the historic walls, ceilings, and historic features, allowing the full height and width of the original spaces to be expressed in the final spaces.
Building 244 Renovations, Bachelor Officers’ Mess Hall, Fort Leavenworth - 8th Place
Originally constructed as the Bachelor Officers’ Mess Hall, Building 244 started life feeding officers from the adjacent barracks, with four dining rooms each with its own kitchen. It served unchanged until 1951, when a one-story addition was added to the rear, creating a consolidated kitchen. In 1978, the kitchen was converted into a courtroom, and the dining rooms became offices for the Staff Judge Advocate.
In the rehabilitation, the original walls and finishes were left in place and repaired. The original fireplaces were recreated in their original locations as part of the restoration, and amazingly seven of the eight original sets of pocket doors were found intact inside the walls as the historic doorways were recreated.
•Fort Riley Main Post Residential Rehabilitations, Fort Riley Main Post Historic District, Fort Riley - 9th Place Merit Award for Rehabilitation
The Fort Riley Main Post Historic District is home to over 100 historic residences, dating from the earliest days of the fort in the 1850s through to the New Deal-era construction of the 1930s.
Management ofthe housing was taken over by Corvias Military Living in 2006 through a longterm lease with the US Army, as part of the Army’s housing privatization. Plans specific to each of the 39 different historic residence types were created, allowing for the preservation of the
historic character of each type while ensuring the new amenities complemented the original structure. Today the massive stewardship and rehabilitation project is nearing completion, with its total of 253 living units once again enticing soldiers to live on the Main Post.
•St Margaret’s Lofts, St Margaret’s Hospital, Kansas City - 10th Place
Ushering in the next era of historic preservation, the St. Margaret’s Lofts rehabilitation of the 1954 St. Margaret’s Hospital helped preserve an enduring example of Modernist style architecture. Constructed at a time when the medical industry was undergoing a widespread modernization following World War II, the hospital stands as an excellent example of institutional Modernist architecture. The building still retains all character-defining features after its rehabilitation into an active senior living complex, a use well suited to the historic hospital.
Inside, the terrazzo and tile flooring, chapel space, and historic lobby have been retained, while the patient rooms have been converted into new one, two, or three bedroom apartments. The St. Margaret’s Lofts rehabilitation will serve as a large and impressive example of the possibilities in the preservation of Modem architecture going forward.