508 Park is a marvelous example of a Zig Zag Moderne building.
As one of the few remaining such buildings—and probably the best example of this design--in Dallas, 508 Park has great architectural significance.
It was designed by the New Orleans firm, Weiss, Dreyfous, and Seiferth, who also designed the Louisiana State Capitol.
In 1963, the time of the last renovation of 508 Park, the building was practically gutted of all its interior original walls. When purchased by The Stewpot, it had been empty for twenty years and vandalized repeatedly. The distinctive exterior light sconces disappeared years ago.
We commissioned Potter Art Metal to recreate the sconces.
As with the sconces, the Encore Park Project Committee determined to return 508 Park as much as possible to how it appeared in 1930 when construction on the building was completed and historically significant events happened there.
An example of the type of decisions that needed to be made: what color was the very faded paint on the windowsills at 508 when it was fresh and new in the 1930s? Dale Sellers of Phoenix 1Restoration and Construction, asked art conservator Michael van Enter, of van Enter Studio Ltd, to do a historic paint analysis of 508 Park. van Enter has been involved in conservation of several historic buildings including restoring the historic iron work at Union Station.
After viewing samples taken from the building under a microscope, van Enter determined that the newel posts, the balusters, and many of the walls, columns, interior windows, and doors were originally Burma Jade. One detail photo of an exterior metal window frame showed the exposed green paint layer. Analysis revealed that subsequent layers of darker green paint covered the original, lighter green paint, but the original could still be espied.
We’re excited to watch this new (old) paint return to 508. We’re even more excited to be working with such excellent historic restoration companies that enable us to make wise decisions.
We’ve also had a mineral coating applied to the cast stone on the front of 508. This is the same type of product used at fair park on the Centennial Buildings. We will also be restoring the Art Deco elevator inside of 508 Park.