ProMedica Headquarters - Steam Plant
Toledo, Ohio
Best Project

Project Owner: ProMedica 
General Contractor: Rudolph Libbe Inc.
Lead Design Firm: HKS Inc.
Structural Engineer: HKS Inc.
MEP Engineer: SSOE
Specialty Contractor- Steel Erection/Mechanical: GEM Inc.

ProMedica’s headquarters symbolizes rebirth for downtown Toledo. Designed by Daniel H. Burnham and constructed in 1896 as the Toledo Edison Water Street Station, the 78,465-sq-ft steam plant has been an icon of the Toledo riverfront. Though deteriorating and unused, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003. 

Using state historic preservation tax credits, ProMedica renovated the plant into a contemporary, four-story office building for 1,000-plus employees. General contractor Rudolph Libbe Inc. built a 45,000-sq-ft, three-story addition with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Maumee River and demolished and reconstructed two 215-ft-tall smokestacks. 

During the 1980s, when advances in heating and air-conditioning technology made steam heat obsolete, the city shut the plant down. Boilers, turbines and the floor structure were removed, exposing the basement and compromising the building’s structural integrity. City crews had also installed red iron support steel to stabilize the building before closing it. To make the plant structurally sound for ProMedica’s purposes, the project team developed a sequential process to thread a new structural steel frame throughout the building while keeping the old red iron support steel in place.

The project has been instrumental in Toledo’s downtown revitalization. It’s the most significant investment and largest addition of workers there in decades.