These old silos are now Waco’s hottest destination all thanks to the vision of “Fixer Uppers” Chip and Joanna Gaines and the earth-moving work by Pearson Construction.
Magnolia Market Silos – Waco, Texas
What construction company would take on the challenge of a project where every detail would be critiqued by the Joanna Gaines? On top of Joanna’s discerning eye, the construction project would be videotaped for millions of TV viewers to watch. Was there enough space at the silos site for television crews and construction crews? Pearson Construction was up for the challenge, and, in 2017, will start phase 2 of the Magnolia Market at the Silos project.
Chip and Joanna Gaines of HGTV’s “Fixer Upper” wanted to maintain the open, rustic charm of the old silos while making them spacious and comfortable enough to practically live in. This presented a bit of a problem. For example, the existing features—which the “Fixer Upper” duo wanted to maintain—introduced unanticipated space issues when planning the windows, but our designers were able to work in harmony with the existing structure to position the windows in just the right locations to make the owners happy.
To better preserve the exterior, we painted the outside with high-quality elastomeric paint, which will provide years of protection for the structure. The painting process proved difficult as well. While washing and painting the exterior, the crew had to provide a lift system to reach the towering silo. It was a three-minute ride to the top of the 85-foot boom.
The crew installed ADA-approved handicap ramps and rails on a 4.5-foot elevation, nearly twice the height of a typical building and completely unthought of when the original structure was designed. The seven-foot-wide ramps provide ample room for patrons to access the facility as they wait for their chance to tour the renovation. We also installed four-story elevators that that provide landings from the barn to the mercantile to the office to the roof. It was the first time we installed an elevator with a duel-opening cab. We laid a foundation on dirt floors and wood over existing train tracks.
Chip even broke a sweat in front of the HGTV camera crew as he helped rake the concrete into position. Joanna had a hand in things, too; she and her husband left palm impressions in the freshly poured cement for a little “Hollywood” commemoration. Their work on the project was featured in season 3 of “Fixer Upper.”
The offices were developed into loft-stye working areas. We put up walls for offices and support beams to give employees the cozy feeling the owners wanted. The crew laid turf on the roof and, as always, safety is top of mind. Rails are installed along the perimeter of the roof area with cables instead of steel rods. Additional structural steel beams and columns were engineered to support foot traffic on the rooftop.
Our team’s creativity and attention to detail did not go to waste during this project. The conduits were hand-bent to create a mid-century, postmodern aesthetic throughout the facility. As per the owners’ vision, We utilized century-old reclaimed studs, recovered barn tin pressed by forklifts into ceiling tiles, and antique lights throughout the store. The project received tax increment financing from the Waco for beautifying the city. High efficiency LED lighting brought the building up to modern code while keeping the festive atmosphere.
In less than seven months, the 26,000 square-foot silos were completed. Pearson gave the Magnolia Market’s owners—who are world-renowned for their discerning eye and attention to detail—exactly what they were looking for.
- Delivery Method: CMAR
- Size: 26,000 SF
- Start Date: March 2015
- End Date: October 2015
- Project Type: Renovation
The Magnolia Market Silos