Thompson Electric Company of Omaha, was part of the project team of a $23 million renovation of the Historic Omaha Federal Building into a 152 room Residence Inn by Marriott. The 12 story building is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and will have some old-school gangsters hanging around when it opens in September. Along with the likes of Machine Gun Kelly, Pretty Boy Floyd and Ma Barker – a few of the infamous faces on an unearthed 1930’s FBI most-wanted poster, guests and visitors will also see a trio of Great Depression era vault doors on display and perhaps notice an eerie basement escape route to a nearby alley.
Thompson Electric mobilized on-site in September of 2012 and completed the project in September of 2013. During the peak of construction Thompson Electric had a field staff of 20 electricians working on the project.
Because of the building’s status with the National Register of Historic Places, there were many challenges on the project. We could not disturb any of the ceilings or walls in the common spaces and had to find alternatives ways of running electrical circuits. We accomplished this by channeling the floors (cutting 4 inch grooves) and also by channeling (in approved locations) the walls. The Historic Preservation Office wanted us to use, as much as possible, the existing conduit for the new wiring. This provided new challenges as part of the existing conduit was plugged/cut or capped and the Thompson team had to figure out where and how to by-pass the plugged conduit and reconnect back to the usable conduit. This was accomplished by utilizing space in the stair towers to by-pass the non-usable conduit.
Despite all of the challenges, the Thompson Electric team completed the project on schedule and on budget. Congrats to all who worked on this Historic Building.
Here is a link to an article in the Omaha World Herald for more information about the project.