The former 10,000-square-foot governor’s residence, located on the southwest corner of the North Dakota Capitol Grounds in Bismarck, needed critical updates, including asbestos, lead, and mold removal; roof repairs; handicap accessibility features; and enhanced security features. These updates were necessary for the health and safety of residents but would have cost nearly $3 million. In 2015, the North Dakota Legislative Assembly voted to allocate up to $5 million toward the construction of a new structure. With funding secured, the State of North Dakota hired the team of Chris Hawley Architects (CHA) and KLJ to design and engineer more-appropriate living quarters.
KLJ conducted civil site planning for the new governor’s residence. Considerations included private access, public assembly access, security fencing, and maintaining existing trees. Additionally, KLJ conducted a topographic field survey and provided site services including site grading and layout design; roadway, parking, curb and gutter, and sidewalk design; sanitary sewer system design; water service and fire protection line design; stormwater management planning and design; erosion control planning; and permitting. KLJ and CHA worked together to select construction materials that are sturdy, cost effective, and energy efficient. The exterior is made of brick, limestone, and granite. Points of access and egress were also carefully designed to ensure safety and security for all current and future residents.
KLJ developed and engineered the site for a facility which features both a secure residence and an area designated for public gatherings, demonstrating that a partially-public facility could be incorporated into an otherwise private and secure structure. The project, which was completed in the fall of 2017, had a direct, positive impact on local and state economy. In-state firms designed, engineered and constructed the residence and many materials were purchased locally as well; the brick for the exterior of the home was manufactured by Hebron Brick Company, which is the sole brick manufacturer in North Dakota and one of the most prominent brick companies in the upper Midwest.