DALLAS-The Dallas Arboretum has just broken ground on a $10.5-million Trammell Crow Visitors Education Pavilion on the south side of the botanical grounds.

Meridian Commercial Inc. of Dallas is the general contractor. The two-building project is a design of Oglesby Greene Inc. of Dallas, the architect of record, and Lake/Flato Associates of San Antonio, the design architect. Naud Burnett II of Dallas is the landscape architect for the 12-acre site.

The project consists of a 17,000-sf exhibit hall and 20,000-sf administration building. The Trammell Crow Visitors Education Pavilion will contain classrooms, conference rooms, gift shop and orientation center as well as aesthetically complementary hardscape anchored by water features. The buildings are being constructed of stone and wood in a natural design to blend in with the arboretum environment. The pavilion carries a fall 2002 completion.

The project also calls for Meridian also to enlarge the arboretum’s parking area, adding 300 to 350 spaces for a total of 900 spots. The Meridian crew will be working under a schedule that is least disruptive to the upscale neighborhoods flanking the arboretum.

Randy Rogers, Meridian’s director of business development, tells GlobeSt.com that these are the first buildings to be constructed at the arboretum since 1986. “It’s a museum-like quality project and because of what it is and where it is, there are a lot of artistic features to it,” he says.

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