A Signature in the Sky: Why Trammell Crow Center remains an architectural icon

The sixth tallest building in Dallas and the 18th tallest in the state – from the moment of its completion in 1984 Trammell Crow Center made an immediate impression on architectural aficionados the world over. With its signature glass pyramid lit from dusk to dawn, National Geographic considers it one of the most identifiable buildings in the country. Let’s take a closer look at a few of the reasons Trammell Crow Center stands tall in a city skyline known for its provocative, energetic and self-assured structures.

World Renowned Architect

Considered one of the master architects of our time, Richard Keating helped reshape the Dallas skyline in the 1980s. Keating is the mind behind both the Trammell Crow Center along with Dallas’ other postmodern icon, Chase Tower. His incredible work dots the country and spans the globe, and includes the tallest glass skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere, Houston’s Wells Fargo Plaza.


World Class Finishes

From the pristine granite selection to the smoky glass facade and the luxurious interior, no expense was spared in sourcing the world’s finest materials to build Trammell Crow Center. Autumn Brown granite formed near Saint Quebec in Canada’s Cambrian Shield graces the exterior. Rose-colored Vermillion granite from Manitoba, Canada, along with accents of Montorfano white granite from Northern Italy were used in the original plaza.  


The lobby floor features Andes Black granite formed in the mountains between Argentina and Brazil, and the original rotunda was constructed of Calcatta white marble from the same Italian mountain quarried by Michelangelo. All of the fine-grained, bronze set, red Kevazingo wood used in the lobby was hewed from a single Bubinga tree found in the tropical rainforests of Africa’s Ivory Coast.


The Sculpture Garden

Trammell Crow Center’s shaded sculpture garden lives up to its Arts District address. Once home to more than 20 sculptures by French masters including Rodin and Maillol, visitors now discover a Zen oasis featuring magnificent historical and contemporary works from the Crow Collection of Asian Art.


Building On A Legacy

The redevelopment of an architectural treasure like Trammell Crow Center is a sacred undertaking. The goal was to keep the iconic nature from afar while rebooting the design from the third floor down with a focus on clean lines and modern materials. All of the new interior finishes have been selected with thoughtful regard for the original selections. The new black and bronze flooring, Noir St. Laurent, comes from a small quarry in southern France.  The wood paneling throughout the lobby has been sourced from a single tree, Mozambique, a tropical olive from Central Africa.  The feature wall in the Great Hall, Corteccia Quartzite, has been imported from Brazil, and the white marble walls, Bianco Dolomiti, has been sourced from the same region in Italy as the original Calcatta that featured prominently throughout the original lobby.  In addition to the changes in the interior, the most notable change to the original exterior structure is a new 50×80 foot glass and metal façade that extends out to Ross Avenue and pours light into the expansive new lobby. A similar extension stretches out to the Flora Street entrance, and the extended Olive and Harwood Street corners make room for shops and restaurants.


With construction wrapping up in 2018, this modernized architectural icon is now more connected to the vibrancy of the Dallas Arts District, and has become the centerpiece of a mixed-use urban-lifestyle destination.