On a humid and rainy day, Tyler Graybill and Nicole Baer visited their latest project, the Rye Street Market, in the Port Covington area of Baltimore City. The project consists of four buildings overlooking the waterfront and centered around a plaza, that will be used for offices, retail, and amenity space. The purpose of the site visit was to celebrate a milestone: the topping out. Tyler and Nicole represented Hope Furrer Associates at the ceremony which included our partners during design and construction – the Whiting Turner Contracting Company, Weller Development, and architects from MGMA, along with members of community groups and subcontractors.
For this topping out party, a traditional holly tree was hoisted to the top of our new seven story conventional concrete office building, affectionately known as “Building D.” It is unclear what this tradition meant over time, as it existed over 1000 years ago – possibly as far back as 700 A.D. One theory is that it was started by Scandinavians to appease the gods, and the evergreen is seen as a symbol of life and good luck for the future. Today, the topping out is a way to acknowledge and thank the workers who have spent long hours outside to build a structure. As such, we were treated to a lunch, and given the opportunity to sign a placard that will be used to decorate a large pot for the holly tree. Someday, the tree will sit on the terrace of neighboring Building B and serve as a reminder of the hard work and dedication that went into the design and construction of the project.