CTA IN THE NEWS: Legendary bull elk’s antlers housed in remodeled Yellowstone visitor center
In a place where he used to stab tourists, their vehicles and even a park ranger with his antlers during the fall rut, bull elk No. 6 has been somewhat memorialized in a new exhibit at the remodeled Albright Visitor Center in Mammoth Hot Springs, Wyo…. The Albright Visitor Center is housed in the old bachelor officers’ quarters built in 1909 for the Army when it was stationed in the park to halt poaching. The three-story stone structure, which also has a full basement, was completely gutted “down to the stone walls” by Swank Enterprises’ construction crews, Blackford said. The $8.1 million project started in September 2013 and included reinforcing the stone walls with metal framing to mitigate possible earthquake damage while also strengthening the building. The last time the building was renovated was in 1978….
“One of the bigger changes is that now visitors have to come inside and go downstairs to get to the bathroom,” Blackford said. “And now the building is wheelchair-accessible from the front, you used to have to come in through the back.” The redesign preserved some of the historic fixtures like windows, doors and fireplaces, but now provides more natural light to the interior with new office space on the third floor. The renovations were designed by CTA Architects Engineers. A grand opening celebration will be held on July 12 at 10 a.m. with former superintendent Bob Barbee and superintendent Dan Wenk participating.
INFO FROM PROJECT MANAGER SUE ANDERSON:
This historic building has been renovated and re-purposed many times during the past century. The most recent rehabilitation included installation of a steel framework to help the load-bearing stone structure better resist seismic events. Life safety and ADA compliance issues within the building were also addressed. Bats had taken up residency in the attic. Guano was abated along with mercury vapor lamps and lead paint.
Power, fire alarm, and security systems were replaced, plus radon venting and fire suppression were added to protect occupants and building contents. The mechanical system was replaced and air conditioning was added. New exhibits focus on park history and the Northern Range area of Yellowstone, with its diverse and abundant wildlife. The Yellowstone Association has a revamped bookstore with educational materials about Yellowstone Park and the surrounding Rocky Mountain region.
CTA Architects Engineers
- Sue Anderson — PM
- Katarie Crozier — WP
- Greg Dooley — CA On-site Rep
- Jim Beal — Design/Planning
- Diego Zapata — Architectural
- Lesley Gilmore — Historical
- Teri Coyle — Interiors
- Amber Holberg, Trent Scwartzkopft — Structural
- Ammon Palmer — Mechanical
- Steve Marshall — Plumbing
- Jeff Haidle — Electrical
- Dan Kopp, Jay Listoe — Fire Protection
- Ron Isaccson, Mikel Johnson — Civil
- George Bornemann — Site Survey
- Pat Todd, Bob Jones — Envelope
- Keith Cron, Casey Huffman — RadonContractors
- Steve Bjordahl
Bjordahl Structural Consulting
- Kevin Oliver
Northern Industrial Hygiene;
Lead and Bat Guano Abatement
- Pacific Studio
Exhibit Design and Install
- Swank Enterprises
Top three images courtesy National Park Service. Additional images by Sue Anderson.