Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks—Montana WILD

Project overview

Located in the historic Steadman Foundry building, the Montana Wild Outdoor Education Center is part of the Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) Wildlife Center at Spring Meadow Lake State Park near Helena, Montana. Phase 1 of the project included stabilization of the existing century-old stone building to bring it up to current seismic codes. The project included major foundation and wall rehabilitation, as well as replacement of roofing, windows and concrete floor slab. CWG Architecture created a master site plan and phase 2 floor plan for the Education Center and provided the FWP Foundation with fundraising presentation materials. FWP completed phase 2 of the Education Center in 2010, which included sitework, building interior and exhibit installation.

Process

  • Phase 1 structural stabilization and building envelope renovation. 
  • Development of schematic plans and cost estimates for agency fundraising.
  • Phase 2 interior renovation and building addition.
  • Construction administration to mitigate many unforeseen conditions due to the building’s age.

Outcome

This facility is a successful adaptive reuse of a historical building that sat unused for many years. Thoughtful design of the structural and building envelope systems maintain the historic integrity of the building while bringing the building into compliance with current codes. A phased project approach allowed FWP to develop the facility as funding allowed. Montana WILD serves the state of Montana as a destination learning center for students as well as a conference and classroom space for continued education programs for children and adults.