Friede News & Updates

Work Underway on Kalahari Resorts $31.5 Million Expansion in The Dells

[fa icon="calendar"] Dec 8, 2017 9:24:00 AM / by Scott G. Truehl

Scott G. Truehl

Kalahari Resorts | Wisconsin DellsThis $31.5 million, 120,000-square-foot expansion of meeting space and facilities at The Dells location is slated for completion in September 2019. 

In our neck of the Wisconsin woods, Kalahari Resorts & Conventions is one of the most respected and popular destinations for both families and business leaders. With a fun-filled indoor water park, guest rooms, restaurants, meeting spaces, ballrooms, and more, the Wisconsin Dells Kalahari Resorts attracts vacationers and convention groups from throughout a region that extends from Chicago to Minneapolis and beyond.

A Popular Resort Grows Bigger and Better
Now Friede & Associates is working with longstanding client Kalahari Resorts, and our architectural partner ADCI, on a $31.5 million, 120,000-square-foot expansion of meeting space and facilities at their Wisconsin Dells location. Slated to open September 2019, the project will expand total meeting space to 230,000 square feet. Plans also call for the construction of a new 56,000-square-foot ballroom augmenting the facility’s existing 20,560-square-foot and 17,200-square-foot ballrooms, as well as space for up to 10 new private conference spaces bringing the total meeting rooms tally up to 45. A ground-breaking ceremony was held October 5, with site work beginning that same week. Site construction is well underway (see photo below).

Kalahari Convention Center Construction | Wisconsin Dells

The project will also provide enhanced load-in and load-out capabilities, larger registration and client office areas, and expansive sun-drenched pre-function spaces, 'recharge' lounges, and outdoor patios. The Wisconsin Dells location is known for state-of-the-art amenities that include complimentary wi-fi throughout the site, ample free parking, world-class dining and catering, a relaxing spa and salon, and other business- and family-friendly extras.

Our team at Friede & Associates is providing Construction Management services on this expansion project. As Construction Manager, we’ll be Kalahari Resorts’ advocate, monitoring and verifying that the best interests of our client are advanced at every stage of this important project.

Our previous work for Kalahari Resorts includes a slide tower replacement, a new restaurant , and a variety of other projects at the company’s Wisconsin Dells location.

The 22-month-long project is designed to expedite the work while minimizing disruptions to current operations. The first challenge will be moving 750,000 cubic yards of material (which we affectionately refer to as Kalahari Mountain) to accommodate the new facilities.  This work will continue well into the winter.  The actual building construction is anticipated to start next June and be completed in August of 2019. Friede & Associates will bring its 70+ years of experience in constructing commercial structures in tight spaces to this exciting new project.

Watch time-lapse video of the North and South Parking Lot Excavations in action:

Kalahari Resorts: A Game-Changer Wherever It Goes
Kalahari Resorts “are inspired by an African philosophy that embraces the spirit of “ubunto,” a belief that every person’s humanity is tied to everyone else’s so that what you do affects the whole world.” This philosophy is brought to life through Kalahari Resorts’ hospitality ethic and its African-themed decor featuring authentic art, furniture, and handicrafts.

Kalahari Resorts | Friede & Associates

Founded in the Wisconsin Dells in 2000 by owner Todd Nelson, Kalahari Resorts debuted one of the most innovative and exciting water park resort and convention center destinations in the country. In 2005, Nelson took his “all-under-one-roof” water park resort and convention center concept to Sandusky, Ohio, where the resort quickly became one of the region’s most popular tourism and business travel destinations.

The next Kalahari Resorts project was created in the Pocono Mountains. The $350 million, 150-acre complex in Monroe County, Pennsylvania opened in 2015 and continues to be an economic powerhouse in the region.

Soon, Kalahari Resorts will bring a destination hotel, conference center, and water park to Round Rock, Texas in a move that city leaders there are saying could turn Round Rock into a tourist destination. The Round Rock location will be the largest Kalahari resort, with nearly 1,000 guest rooms, a 200,000-square-foot indoor water park, and 150,000 square feet of convention space.

While Kalahari Resorts locations are typically 125 to 150 acres, the Round Rock project will sit on a 340-acre site. It is expected to create more than 700 full-time and part-time jobs, according to the Round Rock Chamber of Commerce. The company will invest at least $250 million in the project, which is slated for completion in 2020.

Doing What We Do Best: Deliver What Our Clients Need
“This is another exciting project for us,” said Scott Truehl, Executive Vice President and Partner of Friede & Associates. “We enjoy working with Kalahari Resorts, with whom we share a commitment to customer service and top-quality outcomes. Kalahari aims to provide a best-in-class experience to its guests all over the country. We’re committed to doing everything we can to help the company accomplish that.”

We’ll keep you updated on the progress of this project here on our blog. In the meantime, if there’s anything the Friede team can do to help you accomplish your goals, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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Friede & Associates does more than just build structures. We take our clients' ideas and make them a reality. Our pre-construction services include site analysis, financing, approvals, permitting, cost control, scheduling, and much more. If you need a well-oiled team to help you get your project off the ground, contact us today...

About Friede:

When you select Friede & Associates, you are buying more than our quality-assured construction services. You also get the performance and reliability of some of the top suppliers and subcontractors in the area. While other contractors may be cutting quality to remain competitive on price, Friede is forging relationships with members of the project team to bring you the best value and highest quality for your investment.

Topics: Kalahari Resorts & Conventions

Scott G. Truehl

Written by Scott G. Truehl

Executive Vice President & Partner—With more than 30 years of experience in site selection and commercial development, Scott is responsible for assisting clients with not only their project development, but also their site analysis/acquisition, municipal approval and development needs. Scott is an active member and presenter at the international Construction Leadership Network and is a speaker at both national and state contracting conferences on topics including: creating a positive corporate culture; marketing construction services; design-build construction; and working with Realtors and developers. He also routinely participates in “Meet the Generals” programs around the state of Wisconsin and speaks to hundreds of trade contractors each year on how to effectively work with general contractors. For more than three decades, Scott has served the Wisconsin community in various roles: as a city councilman in Madison and Stoughton, as well as on numerous municipal boards, committees and economic development commissions.

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