University of Wyoming Archaeological Repository

Scope of Work

Report

Berggren Architects completed an assessment for the museum.

Location

Laramie, WY

History

The University of Wyoming Anthropology was built in 1983.

Completion

The project was completed in 2018.

The Challenge

In 2018, Berggren Architects and collections assessor Beverly Perkins were asked to complete a report for the University of Wyoming Archaeological Repository. The repository was originally created in the 1970s and remains as the only federally approved archaeological repository in Wyoming. A recent inventory of the data at the repository identified over 4.5 million artifacts, field notes, photographs, digital media articles, maps, and federal and state forms and permits from over 14,000 sites. The repository’s collections and research are used every year by hundreds of thousands of researchers, students, and public members from around the world.

Much of the shelving had been covered with plastic to protect artifacts from potential water leakage from pipes overhead.

Photo by conservator Beverly Perkins

These rolls of paper were sitting unprotected directly under piping.

Photo by conservator Beverly Perkins.

A complicated system of catch basins, drainage trays, and piping existed to direct condensation from the dehumidifiers away from the artifacts.

Collections manager Marieka Arksey and conservator Beverley Perkins look over samples of the museum’s collection.

Workspace for the museum staff.

Many of the storage boxes were not archival or strong enough to ensure the safety of the collection.

Photo by Beverly Perkins

The Strategy

The repository’s archival storage comprises mainly two large areas in the lower level of the University of Wyoming Anthropology Building. Though there were issues with storage space throughout, we found the most issues in the southern area.

In making our recommendations, we considered the presence of large-volume spaces with little air circulation, reducing the efficacy of dehumidifiers. The current dehumidification system required elaborate piping, drainage trays, and catch basins to manage the condensation. Additionally, much of the shelving has been draped with plastic sheets out of concern for potential leaks from overhead water piping.

The Results

After extensive investigation, Berggren Architects and the assessment team concluded that serious moisture intrusion warranted consideration of the design of a new structure specifically for archival storage. With that as an ideal goal, our team also made recommendations for improving the current facility. We recommended dividing the south section of the basement into three areas: the first, with the least overhead piping, for the most delicate artifacts; the second, adjacent to the utility tunnel, for janitorial supplies; and the third for less-delicate artifact storage. A suspended ceiling would also reduce the volume of air to be conditioned, improving dehumidification.

The repository is located in the University of Wyoming Anthropology building.

The museum owns many fossil artifacts, including this display of bison skulls.

The building holds important anthropological and archaeological offices alongside the repository.

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Our Process

We listen to you

We are preservation architects, let’s get together and talk about your project. Once we know your ideas, we can start your project in the right directions.

We involve you in the planning

Planning projects is what we do. We’ll work with you to develop the best way to implement your ideas. Our written documents are the road map which is essential to ensuring your expectations.

We make it happen

When you’re ready to implement your ideas, we’ll gather together the craftsmen and women necessary and bring your ideas to life. Architecture is in the details. We will follow your project through completion ensuring all the details meet your expectations.

What We Offer

Restoration

We offer restoration and preservation of your historic structures. Using extraordinary materials and craftsmanship, our historic structures are a lasting tribute to the people for whom they were built.

Consulting

We offer consulting services to both general clients and professional clients in sharing our knowledge and expertise in the area of historic preservation. Our master planning and preservation planning prepares our clients to be better able to plan for the life of their historic structures and districts.

New Construction

We know the meaning of sustainability because of our in-depth work with structures which have stood the test of time. We offer sustainable and green new construction which is historically sympathetic, including in the form of additions.

Our Team

Principal, Preservation Architect

Jerry L. Berggren, AIA

Production Manager

Garry Martin, Associate AIA

Architect

Farheen Sirajuddin

Architectural Historian

Janet Jeffries

Architectural Student Intern

Morgan Davis

Architectural Student Intern

Brandy Nguyen

Architectural Student Intern

Alexi Caines

Principal, Preservation Architect

Jerry L. Berggren, AIA

In 1977, Jerry Berggren founded what would become Berggren Architects, P.C. The firm began as a sole proprietorship in Lincoln, Nebraska and has since then been dedicated to the preservation of Nebraska’s finest architecture. The 1983 Jobs Bill was the milestone which introduced the firm to its most significant building type, the historic county courthouse. A project to improve the thermal efficiency of the windows at the Johnson County Courthouse in Tecumseh also initiated Berggren’s concern for energy conservation and an ongoing commitment to sustainable design.

In 1986, Jerry’s “Courthouse Trail” proposal to the state was approved. The Courthouse Trail experience solidified two career-long relationships with the Nebraska Energy Office and the Nebraska Association of County Officials. He continued to serve Nebraska’s county clients and in 2002 he became the recipient of the Honors Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This achievement was Berggren’s first nationally recognized award.

Today, Jerry Berggren has expanded his firm and employs professionals with abilities in historic preservation, architecture, interior design, sustainability, master planning and more. The future will undoubtedly hold more unexpected opportunities and challenges. He looks forward to each of those and you are invited to contact him directly regarding the architectural challenges you face.

Production Manager

Garry Martin, Associate AIA

Garry has been working in the architectural field continuously since obtaining a master’s degree in architecture from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1991. He had previously worked with Jerry Berggren as an intern in 1989 and the experience piqued his interest in the field of preservation. Garry leads the production team at Berggren Architects, P.C.

Architect

Farheen Sirajuddin

Farheen, a citizen of India, began her career with formal education in that county achieving the status of architect. When her husband was transferred to the US, she seized the opportunity to study at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln graduating in 2019 with her Master of Architecture. She immediately became one of our full time employees continuing to work until her student visa expired in July of 2020. Having to return to India, we thought we had lost a valued employee. Thanks to COVID, we have had to learn to work remotely. From India, Farheen is once again joining us. This time as a contract employee and we are very grateful to have her back

Architectural Historian

Janet Jeffries

Janet has a career history as an educator, writer, and researcher in the field of historical and architectural preservation. She currently works as the College Historian for Doane College in Crete, NE and is the Curator for the Crete Heritage Society. Janet is currently employed as the firm’s Architectural/Preservation Historian.

Architectural Student Intern

Morgan Davis

Morgan Davis joined Berggren Architects in 2018. As an architectural intern, Morgan’s love for historic architecture has influenced her desire to understand the importance of a building’s life span. Her passion for creating environmentally sustainable designs has made her an asset to our team. Morgan is working remotely as she pursues a Masters of Architecture at the University of Michigan. She currently holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Design, Architecture from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Architectural Student Intern

Brandy Nguyen

Brandy Nguyen joined Berggren Architects. in April of 2020. As an architectural student, Brandy was recruited in 2020 to become the next Larsen Legacy intern. During this year of his internship, he is taking charge of the firm’s outward appearance. Website development and polishing the proposal we submit are among his responsibilities. He is also becoming a significant help with the production of construction documents.

Architectural Student Intern

Alexi Caines

Alexi joined Berggren Architects in 2021. In her first year as a Larsen Legacy intern, her responsibilities began with coordinating office operations and research. Her current responsibilities include marketing and preparation of construction documents and design.

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