Historic Landmark District, Kenwood, Chicago - masonry

The property, built in 1910, is part of the Madison Park Historic District in Chicago's Kenwood neighborhood. The neighborhood is popular with faculty members from the University of Chicago, including Mr. and Mrs. Obama.

The Meridian Group and Drive Architecture were retained by the condominium association to address concerns raised by the Department of Conservation about the condition of the masonry. This led to an overall assessment of the building envelope (roof, masonry, windows, lintels) for the association. Since this is part of a historic district, we were required to only use the original brick on the public sides of the building.

We developed a phased asset management plan for the exterior. The first phase included

  • masonry work from the roof down to the tops of the third floor windows
  • replacement of failed lintels and beams above select windows,
  • removal and replacement of the roof which included installation of a fire-rated deck,
  • removal reinsulation of the existing steam pipes that run through the attic crawl spaces,
  • preparation for a future fire alarm system, and
  • installation of R-50 insulation in the attic crawl spaces.

The second phase included

  • removal of the limestone panels on the south elevation,
  • replacement of lintels that had rusted through,
  • followed by reinstallation of the limestone panels, and
  • installation of a commercial grade fire alarm system.

The fire alarm system was planned and designed in a manner that will permit the future addition of an elevator recall system for the building elevators.

Some of Meridian's responsibilities with the implementation of an asset management plan include:

  • develop a work scope and specification so that the owner and the contractor know what will be built,
  • identify and qualify contractors for each of the trades,
  • manage the construction project,
  • receive and turn over to the association insurance certificates, waivers of lien and warranty documents