H.C.R. No. 104
                              HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION
    1-1        WHEREAS, Many people were involved in the Capitol Restoration
    1-2  project but for one very special individual, our esteemed
    1-3  colleague, the Honorable Debra Danburg, the preservation and
    1-4  restoration of this historic seat of Texas government represented a
    1-5  fiduciary duty that required prompt action by state officials to
    1-6  ensure its continued existence as a shrine to Texas history; and
    1-7        WHEREAS, From its inception, the vision of the present Texas
    1-8  Capitol was a grand one; the previous Capitol had been destroyed by
    1-9  fire on November 9, 1881, and, though the building's loss expedited
   1-10  the need for the completion of the new Capitol, those who were
   1-11  involved with the construction process in 1888 also had to contend
   1-12  with a number of frustrating delays throughout the ordeal; and
   1-13        WHEREAS, On March 4, 1884, the first 60 tons of limestone
   1-14  were delivered to the Capitol grounds, only to be rejected because
   1-15  the material did not meet required standards; after the decision
   1-16  was made to switch from limestone to granite, a special railroad
   1-17  had to be constructed to carry the stone from Granite Mountain in
   1-18  Burnet County to Austin, resulting in further delays; and
   1-19        WHEREAS, Other problems were soon to follow; though the state
   1-20  had agreed to use convict labor, labor unions were opposed to such
   1-21  competition and, as a result, stonecutters were brought in from
   1-22  Scotland to continue construction in an action that prompted a
   1-23  lawsuit and a boycott of the project by the International
   1-24  Association of Granite Cutters; and
    2-1        WHEREAS, Despite these and other delays, six years and 10
    2-2  months after the project had been started, the building was finally
    2-3  accepted by the Capitol board and in May of 1888, the new State
    2-4  Capitol was dedicated and opened for business, having achieved the
    2-5  proper balance between symbolic expression and functionalism; and
    2-6        WHEREAS, Texans have always taken great pride in the beauty
    2-7  of their State Capitol and with good reason; modeled on the U.S.
    2-8  Capitol in Washington, D.C., the monument is shaped like a Greek
    2-9  cross with a magnificent rotunda in the middle; and
   2-10        WHEREAS, Though the symbolic value of the Capitol has
   2-11  remained in the structure's majestic spaces throughout its
   2-12  existence, changing technology and increased personnel soon created
   2-13  a growing number of functional problems that hindered the
   2-14  building's effectiveness as a workplace; through the years,
   2-15  solutions to these problems were addressed in a piecemeal fashion,
   2-16  resulting in a building that was not only inefficient but also
   2-17  structurally unsound and contaminated by asbestos; and
   2-18        WHEREAS, To address this serious problem, the 68th
   2-19  Legislature created the State Preservation Board and in 1988, 100
   2-20  years after the Capitol first opened its doors, an architect was
   2-21  hired and the development of a master plan for the Capitol
   2-22  Restoration project was begun; and
   2-23        WHEREAS, After a thorough study of space and safety
   2-24  requirements, it was determined that new construction was
   2-25  inescapable if the Capitol were to be preserved as a working seat
   2-26  of Texas government; any visible, aboveground structure was ruled
   2-27  out for historic reasons and it was determined that an "invisible"
    3-1  building should be constructed belowground, with its roof
    3-2  attractively landscaped to retain the area's former character; and
    3-3        WHEREAS, The 71st Legislature approved funds for the project
    3-4  and on April 26, 1990, State Preservation Board members
    3-5  participated in the official groundbreaking ceremony to begin
    3-6  excavation work; from the start, the Capitol Restoration project
    3-7  was the subject of controversy among those who questioned the
    3-8  wisdom of spending nearly $150 million on the project when the
    3-9  state faced so many other pressing concerns; and
   3-10        WHEREAS, Fortunately for the citizens of this state,
   3-11  Ms. Danburg, as a native Texan, had long served as a strong voice
   3-12  for her fellow Texans who were not willing to see this majestic
   3-13  symbol of our statehood fall into further disrepair or be destroyed
   3-14  by fire; and
   3-15        WHEREAS, Determined to keep the project on track, Ms. Danburg
   3-16  became the "mother hen" of the restoration effort, participating in
   3-17  weekly "deficiency tours" to highlight just how dangerous the
   3-18  Capitol had become and successfully helping to fend off numerous
   3-19  attempts to raid the Capitol Restoration fund and further delay the
   3-20  construction schedule; and
   3-21        WHEREAS, Like her forebears, Debra Danburg made the
   3-22  preservation and restoration of the Capitol one of her top
   3-23  priorities and her unwavering dedication to this goal has helped to
   3-24  ensure that this magnificent architectural masterpiece will remain
   3-25  a cherished cultural legacy and an outstanding example of historic
   3-26  preservation in which all Texans can take great pride; now,
   3-27  therefore, be it
    4-1        RESOLVED, That the 74th Legislature of the State of Texas
    4-2  hereby commend the Honorable Debra Danburg for her exceptional
    4-3  leadership in the Capitol Restoration project; and, be it further
    4-4        RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be
    4-5  prepared for Ms. Danburg as an expression of high regard by her
    4-6  colleagues in the Legislature of the State of Texas.