Commercial Remodeling in Georgetown Texas | T.A. Todd Construction
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Farney-Daniels LLP, Historic Commercial Remodel

Project Title: Farney–Daniels LLP Office
Completed: 2011

Farney – Daniels Law Firm located in the historic Makemson – Steele building in downtown Georgetown, constructed in 1870.

The challenges to working in a 140 year old building are many, but in re-purposing the available space, the satisfaction lies in overcome the obstacles that are encountered in doing so, all the while honoring and maintaining to the extent that is possible the original character of the structure.

Upon completing the design, required asbestos inspection, obtaining demolition and building permits, we began to renovate a potion of the 140 year old “back” section of the Makemson – Steele building on 8th Street just off of the Square in downtown Georgetown. This section of the building has at various times in the past been part of a hotel, a mercantile, a bank, a restaurant, various storefronts, and office space, most recently housing the offices of Edward Jones Investing.

The primary focus was to provide a kitchen/break-room area for the employees of Farney – Daniels.

The back area where the break room was to go had not been touched for 20 years or so, and needed a complete makeover. The available plumbing and electrical service were not sufficient to meet the needs of the proposed usage of the space, the space was too small, and the floor and the ceiling were too low. We gutted the space down to the original hand hewn stone walls and the original roof trusses. We found and treated for termites. We installed new plumbing and a new 200 amp 3-phase electrical service. We raised the floor and the ceilings. We added structural elements to support enlarging the space. We re-framed new walls, and brought the entire space up to current building code standards. We added recessed can lighting and pressed tin ceilings throughout the space and finished all of the wall and flooring surfaces. We installed a completely new bathroom with a full shower. We upgraded the HVAC system and installed all new duct work. We added insulation to R-38 in the ceilings. We discovered extensive termite damage and another live termite colony living in the storefront entry to the office space. We rebuilt the store front and painted the entryway.

During the past when the space housed a Mexican restaurant a door to a back “patio” had been installed for access to the patio. Subsequently, during a major renovation of the main portion of the building a concrete loading dock was installed where the “patio” was and it “trapped” the door so that it was no longer operable or usable. We raised the door opening and in doing so had to acquire “permission” from the Historical and Architectural Control Commission because it constituted a modification to the exterior of a historical structure.

The new “kitchen” houses custom painted wood cabinets, commercial grade appliances including a  GE 21 cu. ft. counter depth refrigerator, a  GE 17.7 cu. ft. upright freezer, a GE fully integrated dishwasher, a GE over the range microwave oven, a 30” GE freestanding smooth-top electric range, and a commercial under-counter Scotsman ice maker that produces nugget ice. We also installed a Fagor “all in one” washer/dryer combination unit.

In addition to the new “break-room” we installed 2 custom-made 9’ x 3’ longleaf pine doors with Industrex obscure glass, and 3 custom partition windows with fluted glass to both allow access to and keep separated from the existing space in the rest of the building.

  1. Great to see that the Steele/Makemson building is being restored. As a Makemson descendant it is good to see that the building is still around.

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