On Sep. 29, Stateline No. 7 architects took home three awards from the American institute of Architects Wyoming Design and Honor Awards program.

There were 67 submittals for awards in nine categories.

Stateline No. 7 Architects from Casper won the Adaptive Reuse or Historic Award for renovating the 1917 T Square Land Co. building  located on 444 S. Center Street in Casper; it was originally a Chicago Northwestern rail yard warehouse.

This included window replacements, removing many layers of paint from the brick, ADA upgrades, structural repairs, a re-roof that includes a future rooftop terrace, and all new mechanical and electrical systems. A separate asbestos project was coordinated prior to construction. The project was compliant with and received historic tax credit.


The loft; Stateline No. 7 Architects, Courtesy
Stateline No.7 Architects, Courtesy
Office Space; Stateline No.7 Architects, Courtesy

The history of the building inspired industrial finishes throughout the space including concrete countertops, stainless steel, exposed brick, and open structure, all bending with the urban repurpose.

When Stateline No. 7 Architects began renovating, it was "located in a gritty edge of downtown, lacked maintenance, needed significant renovations, was overpriced due to a foreclosure, and was infested with pigeons and vagrants" wrote Lyle Murtha, the firm's founder.

Over 100 years of remodeling was stripped away to reveal the natural beauty of the building. Salvaged plywood and stenciled artifacts were repurposed to enhance the industrial components.

Murtha bought the building in 2011 but has continued working on sections here and there. Even today, they have big plans. About half the building is vacant.


They also won an Honor Awards celebrating the people that work in the firms. It was the first time the Wyoming chapter has given out the award for emerging professionals. They modeled it after the other states that started doing it.

"It's really about firms that do a good job in promoting their young people," said Murtha. "New graduates who come out of architecture school and end up in the firms working and interning and what the firms do to support them."

Murtha explains that he's in an interesting position, because Wyoming doesn't have a University of Architecture. When most kids want to get a degree in architecture, they leave the state and often don't come back. Stateline Architects No. 7 does a lot of recruiting. Murtha stresses the importance of working with young people to help them succeed, giving them time off when they need it, paying them well, and giving them the tools to grow.

Murtha says he would love to talk to anybody who is interested becoming an architect or potentially working for the firm. "We need more," he states.

It is this attitude that earned him the Silver Medal. It is the highest award that the chapter can bestow on an individual.

"I didn't think I was going to win that because there are lots of qualified people. My submittal was more of a warm-up for the future. I did not intend to win. It's all about your involvement in the profession and your community. It's things like this, me talking to a reporter about the value of architecture in our community. The fact that I've written a book that realtors and potential business owners can use as a reference material. We've done a couple documentaries on our work..."

Stateline No. 7 Architects, Courtesy
Stateline No. 7 Architects, Courtesy

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