HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF SJI
After World War I, a new growth surged in the heart of America, powered by the booming auto business. In 1914, in an attempt to create a corridor to the west, the Willys-Overland Company constructed a then massive, 6 story building at 2300 Locust St.. The Willys-Overland Company was once one of the largest automobile manufacturers in the world, hosting the first indoor Saint Louis Auto Show in history. The Willy-Overland Auto Company slowly faded however, as well as the area surrounding its location. However, 80 years later promotions and consulting pioneer, SJI Companies, saw the potential of this once great giant.
WHAT STAAT PROVIDED
Renovations began in 1999 after its official nomination into the National Historic Register. Staat Tuckpointing was contracted directly by the owner to by to renovate much of the exterior of the building, providing tuckpointing, concrete patching, brick reconstruction, as well as protective coatings to the concrete.
Being a historically significant building, as it was, great care had to be taken while renovating. Like all of our historical preservation projects, the SJI building restoration had to be coordinated with the preservation briefs for historic masonry buildings set forth by the National Park Service as well as guided by theSecretary of the Interior Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties guidelines. The owners had their own set of standards to meet as well.
In their restoration endeavors, SJI wanted the perfect match for the brick reconstruction on their main entrance. However, due to the unique style and age of the brick, a match which met these standards simply could not be found. The solution was proposed that brick from a less noticeable area of the building would be transplanted to their main entrance to give it the perfect look.
This not the only thing which stands out about our restoration of the SJI building. Perhaps the most memorable aspect was the intense work schedule. In order for the owner of a historical renovation to receive their much needed tax credits, work must be completed on an accelerated timeline. To ensure the owner received these tax breaks, James G. Staat Tuckpointing had nearly 75% of its tradesmen working on this one building. The results were astounding.