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Best Residential/Hospitality: Museum Tower

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The glass-paneled spire of Museum Tower is the newest star in the Dallas skyline. The 42-story residential high-rise graces the city's upscale Arts District not far from downtown.

Photo by Terri Glanger
True to it's name, Museum Tower offers an atmosphere that is dedicated to art and architecture, seen here in the gallery.
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A total of 615,000 sq ft of residential space is divided into 112 residential units. There are nine different floor plans that range from the 1,800-sq-ft pied-à-terre to a sprawling 9,000-sq-ft penthouse with 12-ft-high ceilings.

A zero-lot-line site in downtown Dallas presented logistical challenges for the construction team, but the structure was completed in just under two years without shutting down traffic on a site with no craft parking or laydown space.

In addition, the changing real estate market in the city prompted significant changes to the floor plan during construction. The solution arose from a tight collaboration between the design and construction teams facilitated by building information modeling.

One innovative aspect of the building is a two-level water tank on the tower's roof that assists in limiting wind sway. Using a computerized program that measures the wind velocity, the water in the tank is put in motion to reduce the building's movement.

The tower was awarded LEED Gold for sustainable practices used during construction. The sustainability goals corresponded with Dallas' pioneering comprehensive green standard for all residential and commercial construction.

Museum Tower is clad in 269,000 sq ft of energy-efficient glass in overlapping panels. It features a complex HVAC system where each of the two heat pumps in each residence is mounted on a spring isolator to reduce noise and vibration.

At its peak, work on the project achieved the rate of building a floor per week. Austin Commercial had nearly 50 subcontractors on the site during construction.

Roughly 85% of the subcontractors on the project were based or have an office in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Others were specialty contractors needed to craft the tower's high-end finishes. On average, there were between 250-300 workers on site daily.

Key Players

Owner Museum Tower, Dallas

General Contractor Austin Commercial, Dallas

Lead Design Johnson Fain, Los Angeles

Structural L.A. Fuess Partners Inc., Dallas

Civil Pacheco Koch, Dallas

MEP Blum Consulting Engineers, Dallas

Architect of Record GDA Architects, Dallas

Program Manager Andres Construction, Dallas

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