Austin, Texas

10,686 sf

July 2010


Humanities Texas


Journeyman Construction is putting “Preservation with a public purpose” in action with the restoration of the Austin landmark Byrne-Reed House. The current owner and operator, the advocacy group Humanities Texas, was instrumental in bringing the Byrne-Reed house back to its original glory while stabilizing the building, introducing modern mechanical systems and improving meeting accessibility. The Texas Historical Commission contributed with a project endowment.

The circa 1905 building has been restored to it’s the original 1900 residence with an sympathetic addition on the service side, housing a new elevator and stair structure. In the early 70’s the porches were closed in and a plaster facade and colonnade were added, completely transforming the appearance of the exterior while used as a commercial property. The Journeyman team restored the art nouveau friezes, trim, mission-style roof tiles, Romanesque arches and Prairie-style porches, as originally designed by prominent Austin architect C.H. Page Jr. using the original, locally sourced Elgin brick, Hill Country limestone, Austin-fashioned iron and Texas pine.

The organization now uses the living room, dining room and other downstairs areas for public spaces; upstairs for private offices. A third floor, built within the attic, is used for offices and the basement has become space for exhibition preparation and storage. The project restored the enormous porches and terraces.


2011 Best Real Estate Awards

2011 Best Restoration Project House/Humanities Texas

2011 Texas Downtown Association – Honor Award for Historic Restoration, Preservation Texas

2010 Best Restoration/Renovation McGraw Hill’s Texas Construction

2010 Excellence in Construction Awards, Associated Builders and Contractor’s Best Restoration Project