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Hardscape Solutions: Deep roots

February 11, 2022 -  By

Company: Complete Landsculpture
Location: Dallas

Continental Gin Building, built in 1888, has a rich history in the Deep Ellum neighborhood of Dallas. At one time, it was the largest facility to manufacture cotton gins.

This project reimagined the building into an indoor and outdoor mixed-use space. Complete Landsculpture preserved original walkways and elements of the cotton gin to reflect the building’s history.
Complete Landsculpture used a Bobcat skid-steer to execute the larger portions of the project. Crews primarily relied on manual labor due to the historic nature of the site and its location near the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) railway.

“We can’t go more than 5 feet from where our project ends into that zone,” says Santosh George, ASLA, lead designer and project coordinator for Complete Landsculpture.

DART trains pass by every 15 minutes. Staff working on the site underwent specific safety briefings and training every two weeks. Painting the fencing at the back of the deck took a full week, with crews working between train trips.

Details of the project include a wrap-around 6,000 square-foot sustainable ash wood decking on a pressure-treated timber frame, limestone seating, Corten steel planters and 80 sky-friendly LED lights.

The project won Complete Landsculpture a Silver Award from the 2021 National Association of Landscape Professionals’ Awards of Excellence program.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

The Continental Gin Building, built in 1888, served as the largest facility to manufacture cotton gins. Now, it serves as a mixed-use building with retail and office space.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

To install the landscape, Complete Landsculpture worked in tandem with crews cleaning the brick facade and installing windows.

 

(Photo: Santosh George)

(Photo: Santosh George)

Crews prepare the front of the site.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Limestone block seating lines the green open space of the property.

 

(Photo: Santosh George)

(Photo: Santosh George)

Crews installed more than 6,000 feet of pressure-treated wood for the deck and walkway between the two buildings.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

String lights at night accent the cafe seating area between the cafe and the Continental Gin Building.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Urban contemporary details include Corten steel planters that line the cafe retail plaza and the front of the building.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

While draining was an original issue with the property, crews set catchments at 20 feet intervals around the building perimeter to trap the water and move it to the city stormwater system.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

DART trains pass by every 15 minutes, which complicated the execution of the wrap-around deck and privacy fence. Every two weeks, Complete Landsculpture crews attended safety briefings and training.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

The wrap-around deck surrounds the building perimeter and a steel privacy fence abuts the DART rail system tracks.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Limestone block seating sourced from a local quarry provide additional seating around the property.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Landscape lighting highlights the limestone block seating.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

The property includes more than 2 acres of green space.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Complete Landsculpture included details from the building’s past, including a gin-weighing lift in the plaza seating area.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

Landscape lighting highlights the urban contemporary details of the project.

 

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

(Photo: Chad Hatcher)

A major component of the project was to include 110 parking spaces for the retail and mixed-use facility within the limited footprint of the property.

Christina Herrick

About the Author:

Christina Herrick is the editor of Landscape Management magazine. Known for her immersive approach to travel from coast to coast in her previous stint as senior editor of American Fruit Grower Magazine, she uses social media (Twitter/Instagram @EditorHerrick) to share her experiences on the road with her audience. Herrick has a degree in journalism from Ohio Northern University and has been in B2B publishing for seven years. She can be reached at cherrick@northcoastmedia.net.

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