Reverchon Park, Restoration Award
3505 Maple Avenue
Historic Restoration Award
This award acknowledges a historic resource that has been properly restored to a specific time period. Projects must fully demonstrate adherence to the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Restoration. A special emphasis is placed on completed projects where owners, architects and contractors practice exceptional care in respecting the original fabric and setting of a historic structure.
Reverchon Park is a historic open space landmark in Dallas that marks the entry of Turtle Creek into the Trinity River floodplain. The restoration and development plan peels back the layers of incremental additions that occurred over the years to reveal the essence of this historic and dynamic property. With respect and meticulous reconstruction of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) architecture that had fallen into disrepair, the restoration of Reverchon Park builds upon the rich legacy of the park’s history to ensure its return to prominence as a destination in the city.
The Hillside Terrace was of great historic importance for the City of Dallas in order for Reverchon Park to be restored to its original character. Over the decades, the Hillside Terrace had become overgrown with vegetation and fallen into disrepair due to vandalism, erosion, and tree roots heaving the rocky soils. The Hillside Terrace was built traversing over forty feet of grade change on steep slopes sometimes in excess of 1:1.
The range of site conditions and building methods made each restorative effort a unique challenge. Though modern building codes have an effect on the project, it was completed as a restorative work as faithfully as possible. The landscape architect researched the historic context of the site, including identifying the quarry which was the likely source for the original stone nearly 80 years ago. The soils on the project consisted of black clay intermixed with flaky weathered limestone, with the native strata sometimes intermixed with fill deposited from construction of the adjacent KT (KATY) Railroad, now the KATY Trail.
All of the new and restorative masonry is a blend of new and salvaged stone. The new masonry elements on site blend seamlessly with the restored historic fabric, evoking an experience long missing from the park. The restored walkways have taken advantage of the vistas overlooking the adjacent creek and meadow, especially in the winter when the trees are dormant. The restoration of the Hillside Terrace’s stone retaining walls, benches, overlooks, and flagstone walks is essential as these elements hold significant cultural value. It restores the intent and framework of the original designs and respects and preserves an important piece of WPA construction.
By exposing the natural beauty of the original design and enhancing it, the design team has been able to successfully create a sense of community and safety for the patrons of Reverchon Park. Reverchon gives a unique sense of arrival for pedestrians and vehicular traffic when approaching the park. Visitors can also access the park by using the newly renovated DART bus station which blends in with the park’s design and connects to trails along Reverchon’s meadow. Community activities such as 5k runs, festivals, and Friends of Reverchon events are now held in this prime location, just one mile from downtown.
Reverchon Park celebrated this important renovation milestone with City officials and the community members on October 5, 2013 with a Grand Reopening.