Completed in 1892 the Mansion served initially as the Pabst family home. Now it serves as a legacy to the city’s brewing industry and a historical monument.
In preparation for addressing a backlog of deferred maintenance issues and needed capital improvements, the Pabst Mansion Board of Directors authorized a full building condition assessment of the facility. The assessment included the full exterior envelope, specific known structural conditions, and a review of a historic elevator and the plumbing, mechanical, and electrical systems. The building was also evaluated for code issues and ADA requirements.
Strang’s challenge was to ensure the preservation of the building so future generations could experience this slice of history. The vision of the space is to use the mansion for education, tourism, and study–to tell a story of Milwaukee’s past by showcasing the ornate rooms, furnishings, and artwork inside this 127-year-old building. Strang’s work on the facility assessment identified the work needed so the mansion can be available for a long time to students, art scholars, tourists, and anyone else interested in history.
The 20,000-SF building has had multiple restorations including upgrading windows, restoring bedrooms, purchasing original furniture from the Archdiocese, and bringing back original artwork from the Pabst family. Making sure the ceiling doesn’t leak, that heat and humidity are maintained, and ensuring weather does not compromise the integrity of the walls and windows, were all necessary elements to restoring and maintaining the structure and operation systems of the Pabst Mansion. With Strang’s assessment of the building envelope, structure, and systems our team’s final recommendation addressed these problems while complying with standards for Historic Restoration.
Following the in-field assessments, Strang reported determinations of cause (where possible) and severity of observed conditions. We outlined recommendations to address these conditions and a preliminary opinion of costs was developed. This was incorporated into a recommended multi-year work plan that could be refined and reorganized according to funding, operational/program development, and building conditions. Strang’s evaluation showed that The Pabst Mansion required extensive attention to the integrity of its exterior envelope, a portion of its structural system, and its various mechanical and electrical systems.
This building is listed on the National Historic Register #75000073.