Tag Archives: adaptive reuse

Creative Historic Reuse Inspires Urban Planning | Fog City Journal

Alamo Drafthouse could make use of California’s Mills Act, which can reduce property taxes through agreed renovations and preservation of the existing historic New Mission Theater. Photo by Andy Sweet.

Before reuse began in 1996, “you could shoot a cannonball down the street and not hit anyone,” Sandmeier said. Today, the number of residential units has grown from 11,000 to 40,000.

The adaptive reuse also speaks to San Francisco’s current acute housing shortage and increasing rent prices, which often pushes young urbanites across the Bay and reduces access to low-income communities, which can be seen in the sprawling gentrification of the Mission District.

“I do think that adaptive reuse alone does not ensure cultural preservation and this is why other planning tools need to be developed to promote cultural preservation,” said San Francisco Architectural Heritage Project Manager Desiree Smith. Her organization is working on preservation planning in the Japantown and South of Market Districts, like the three-story tall St. Joseph’s Cathedral, which is to be redeveloped into offices.

The preservation of historic buildings also provides a “tangible” connection to the past, said Smith.

Read the entire article via Creative Historic Reuse Inspires Urban Planning | Fog City Journal it’s fantastic!

Weston receives just one proposal for historic tavern reuse – Framingham, MA – The MetroWest Daily News

WESTON —

Tavern2.JPG

The town received just one response to its request for proposals to reuse the historic Josiah Smith Tavern and Old Library in the center of town, despite extending its deadline to July 23.

However the proposal from longtime Weston resident Kamran Zahedi, president of Boston-based Urbanica, has already garnered the support of the Women’s Community League of Weston, which currently occupies part of the Josiah Smith Tavern, and the Weston Historical Society.

According to Zahedi, the proposal “suggests incorporating a small cafe/restaurant in the Barn, a bed and breakfast in the tavern, and four condominium units in the Old Library.”

Town Manager Donna VanderClock said the Board of Selectmen received Urbanica’s proposal at its meeting on Tuesday night.

In November 2009, Town Meeting voters rejected a proposal to turn the Josiah Smith Tavern into a 175-seat restaurant and the Old Library into the new home of the Women’s Community League of Weston and a historical archive.

In the newest proposal, Zahedi wrote it “strives to create a place that brings together community members both young and old. Furthermore, the proposal provides space for the current nonprofit tenants, the Women’s Community League and Weston Historical Society, while also being financially feasible.

“Another key tenet of the proposal is to replace much of the vehicular drive through on the site with a landscaped garden courtyard, creating a new public space just across from the town green.”

via Weston receives just one proposal for historic tavern reuse – Framingham, MA – The MetroWest Daily News.

Cleveland Daily Banner – Habitat growing within Expansion to double ReStore floor space

Only three years after acquiring and remodeling the old Cinema Twin theater, Habitat for Humanity of Cleveland Inc. has poured the footings for an 8,000 square-foot expansion of its Habitat ReStore, a discount retailer whose community popularity has exceeded original expectations.

Once completed, the project will double the ReStore’s available retail and processing space.

Since moving into the remodeled theater, the ReStore’s client base has exploded. It not only attracts shoppers of all incomes, but it has also has become a stopping point for antique dealers, “treasure hunters,” developers, builders and remodelers, among others.

via Cleveland Daily Banner – Habitat growing within Expansion to double ReStore floor space.

Crumbling Italian Farmstead Transformed Into a Spectacular Home by Bergmeister Wolf Architects | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

Modern architecture is often the foe of untouched locations steeped with history, but Bergmeisterwolf Architekten seamlessly transformed a dilapidated farmstead in the small town of Sterzing into a stunning home that reflects the ancient architectural sensibilities of the area. A success in both adaptive reuse and siting, the new construction melds beautifully with the surrounding landscape, and provides a stunning escape for its inhabitants year round.

Bergmeister Wolf Architects, farm homes, italian homes, adaptive reuse, historic preservation architecture, stone architecture, green roof, charred wood construction

Read the entire via Crumbling Italian Farmstead Transformed Into a Spectacular Home by Bergmeister Wolf Architects | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.

Abandoned Walmart Turned Into Giant Public Library With Gorgeous Interior. But Where Do They park Walmarts? : TreeHugger

Don’t miss this great article on TreeHugger!

Dave notes that it is also successful; “Within the first month following the opening, new user registration increased by 23%” Everyone thinks it is a wonderful example of adaptive reuse. But one of the problems in reusing big box stores is that they are usually in lousy locations for uses like libraries; they are in places for cars, not kids and seniors who often depend on public libraries. And indeed, the new main library gets a car-dependent walkscore of 49.

via Abandoned Walmart Turned Into Giant Public Library With Gorgeous Interior. But Where Do They park Walmarts? : TreeHugger.

Pig Sty Building into House Conversion | WebUrbanist

Pig Sty Building into House Conversion

A dilapidated pig sty is probably the last place anyone would thing to put a brand new home. However, there is something immediately compelling about the juxtaposition of an old aged shell and a starkly modern interior box that makes this hybrid of old and new immediately more engaging to the eye. The sty portion dates back hundreds of years and sustained age damage over that time and then was nearly destroyed during the Second World War. Restoring the building would have been difficult and cost-prohibitive so the architects came up with a brilliant work-around: they simply inserted a brand new building into the shell of the old one and lined up the windows and openings with the existing perforations in the shell of the sty.

via Pig Sty Building into House Conversion | WebUrbanist.

How a Village Became a Hub for Resilience and Rock & Roll : TreeHugger

Creative Reuse

Down the road from the General Store—past the environmentally-themed charter school that we’ll have to discuss in another post—are the Rivermill Apartments. Housed in the former cotton mill that was the center of Saxapahaw until it was destroyed in a hurricane, the apartments overlook the Haw River. While at first glance they look like expensive yuppie flats, the apartments are actually mostly rentals and seem to house folks from all walks of life and a variety of income levels. Similarly the former mill workers’ cottages are mostly rented out, while a more expensive conversion of an adjacent mill building is currently underway that will feature solar hot water, geothermal heating and a number of other green building features.

via How a Village Became a Hub for Resilience and Rock & Roll : TreeHugger.

Inhabitat – Dairy Barn Transformed into Gorgeous LEED Silver Design and Technology Center on SUNY Campus

SUNY Morrisville State College has a new LEED Silver work center, transformed from a historic arched agricultural building. Designed by Perkins Eastman Architects, the adaptive reuse project has created an open and airy space for the Center for Design and Technology. The former dairy barn was a recognizable symbol on the college’s campus, and is now the symbol of the college’s commitment to sustainability.

via Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.

Sugarhouse Studios Pop-Up Cinema & Workshop Encourages Community Interaction in London Sugarhouse Studios-Assemble-London Legacy Corporation – Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

Sugar House Studios

Nestled in an almost abandoned industrial area near the heart of the London Olympics is a new community space dedicated to redevelopment. Sugarhouse Studios is part pop-up cinema, workshop space, cafe and pizzeria.

Assemble, an artist, designer and architect collaborative in London, converted an abandoned sign-writers workshop into this mixed-use building with aim of encouraging community engagement and developing new ways to redevelop the industrial area.

Using reclaimed and salvaged materials, Assemble, with aid from the London Legacy Development Corporation, has created a vibrant center where people can gather to discuss, learn and create.

via Sugarhouse Studios Pop-Up Cinema & Workshop Encourages Community Interaction in London Sugarhouse Studios-Assemble-London Legacy Corporation – Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.

The Plant: My Beer Feeds Your Fish! – YouTube

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=zMBxJTQqnRI]

A remarkable food production plant is being assembled in a former meat processing facility in Chicago. It’s remarkable because the waste from one type of food becomes the raw material for another. So “The Plant” will be producing Kombucha tea, fresh vegetables, tilapia, and beer…with virtually no waste!

via The Plant: My Beer Feeds Your Fish! – YouTube.

Architecture’s afterlife – SalvoNews.com

Dist. of Col. (Washington DC), USA – Ian Volner is a writer for Architect, the magazine for the American Institute of Architects. His article ‘Architecture’s afterlife’ discusses the ongoing obsession of recycling obsolete building materials over reclamation and salvage, and the processes and costs involved in getting into the reuse game.

Volner begins by painting a picture of the building industry today in the US, with forty percent of solid waste attributed to construction, he says ‘not only rubble and rotting beams, but also countless odds and ends from new construction such as cast off nails and packaging’.

Buildings Materials Reuse Association (BMRA) executive director Ann Niklin adds ‘ “We say it [recycling] is all very well and good, but we also say many of these [materials] could simply be salvaged”.’

There is a positive statement from architects who are using reclaimed materials consistently in their projects.

‘ “We’re really starting to get plugged into, in a much more architectural way, the stream of these materials,” says David Dowell, AIA, a principal of El Dorado Architects, also of Kansas City, Mo. Since expanding to include general contracting services, the firm has been working reuse deeper into its practice.’

Continue reading Architecture’s afterlife – SalvoNews.com

Request for Proposals Issued for Reuse of Josiah Smith Tavern and Old Library – Weston, MA Patch

The Town of Weston, through its Town Manager, has issued a Request for Proposals regarding the adaptive reuse of the historic Josiah Smith Tavern and the Town’s Old Library.

The Town is seeking redevelopment partners who recognize the unique opportunity to bring new life to this rare set of buildings that occupy a highly visible, park-like site along the Boston Post Road at the edge of Weston’s village center and its expansive Town Green.

A copy of the Request for Proposal can be found at http://weston.org under Request for Proposals – Josiah Smith Tavern and Old Library. Responses must be submitted by 4 p.m. on June 7, 2012. Two site visits will be offered – one on April 25 at 10 a.m. and the other on May 3 at 3 p.m.

Continue reading Request for Proposals Issued for Reuse of Josiah Smith Tavern and Old Library – Weston, MA Patch

“Adaptive reuse” brings old warehouses and garages to life – Greater Greater Washington

“Adaptive reuse” brings old warehouses and garages to life

by David Alpert   •   April 24, 2012 3:57 pm

I recently visited an American city with many downtown buildings from a long-departed industry. The city’s downtown is now experiencing new life, and many of the historic buildings are finding new uses after sitting vacant for many years.

  

This is a complex of old warehouses which have now become retail and offices. The developer added a really amazing water feature, a long river which cascades down waterfalls at various intervals. There are small footbridges across the river and even stepping stones to cross in one place.

The old chutes for the products remain and now serve as decorative flourishes. In the center is an old railcar, like those that once transported goods to and from the facility.

 

At another location nearby, people have turned several old garages into bars and music halls. They’ve also become a popular spot for food trucks, and 2 were sitting outside as we passed by on a Saturday.

 

Both of these demonstrate the preservation concept of “adaptive reuse.” Old, historic buildings can become a valued part of a changing community by taking on different functions that residents need today. The distinct architecture of the structures and the small details that nobody would build today adds character and interest.

Bonus question: Can you guess the city?

Update: Several commenters got it very quickly. This is Durham, North Carolina. The large development is the American Tobacco Campus, where tobacco warehouses have become high-end retail adjacent to the new stadium for the Durham Bulls. The garage-turned-bar and music hall is called Motorco, in honor of the building’s historic use.

via “Adaptive reuse” brings old warehouses and garages to life – Greater Greater Washington.

Iron Pipe Shelving Systems for Urban Loft Walls & Corners | Designs & Ideas on Dornob

While they may not work quite as perfectly outside of these idealized environments – chipped-white-paint doors and faded-brick walls – you could imagine these fittings being good fits in minimalist spaces as well.

 

 

Etsy seller stellableu specializes in industrial decor for urban lofts, wrapping and twisting wall-and-corner shelving units in all kinds of creative shapes.

In turn, books take advantage both of existing vertical surfaces and horizontal pieces of solid iron pipe, so keep in mind: you will not be able to set just anything on them, either.

via Iron Pipe Shelving Systems for Urban Loft Walls & Corners | Designs & Ideas on Dornob.

Demolition costs more than renting a bulldozer – Journal of Commerce

Just because you are old and you leak a little, it doesn’t mean you should be put down. I am also referring to buildings.

Charles Olfert

Architecture Matters

Charles Olfert

Most architects have heard “the greenest building is the one that already exists.” Consider how much energy it takes to create a new building.

Richard Moe, National Trust for Historic Preservation President, estimates constructing a new 5,000 square-meter commercial building releases about the same amount of carbon into the atmosphere as driving a car 2.8 million miles.

Architecture Matters

Charles Olfert

He also notes it takes approximately 65 years for a green, energy-efficient new office building to recover the energy lost in demolition.

Most new buildings in Canada are certainly not designed to last anywhere near that long.

I would suggest the benefits of re-development go far beyond carbon reductions. Our cities desperately need the aesthetic diversity and cultural activity supported through adaptive re-use.

Given the benefits of re-use – why are so many buildings demolished? There are three basic reasons.

First, too many politicians still feel it is better to cut the ribbon in front of a brand new, relatively nondescript, glass box than make the necessary longer term commitment towards a comprehensive, complex urban redevelopment strategy.

The second factor is more complicated. Current building codes and civic building permit policies make it very difficult to save buildings. It seems an old building is automatically “grandfathered” as a non-compliant fire hazard as long as the use doesn’t change. However, once renovated, EVERYTHING needs to be “brought up to current standards”. Many developers try this once or twice and then simply throw up their hands in frustration.

Almost everyone appreciates a century old marble staircase with intricate wood posts and wrought iron railings. These stairs can function effectively for hundreds of years, but become immediately “unsafe and non-compliant” the minute a building changes use.

The issue of course is insurance and legal responsibility. Can you be “partially compliant” – who takes responsibility?

I am not advocating unsafe buildings. In fact, I am suggesting that many older buildings could be much safer if there were some flexibility in allowing small changes in use, with incremental safety improvements.

Many landlords and developers are not prepared to spend any money on an existing building because it is too expensive to do a complete code upgrade. Also discouraging – many of those upgrades destroy some of the best features of the building. The result is many attractive, older buildings sit empty or end up with marginal, illegal or existing unsafe uses.

The third factor is related to code issues and the subtle way regulations discourage mixing uses in buildings. For example there are typically and quite logically, fire separation requirements between building uses which can be very complicated.

As we try to encourage people to live downtown, we should seriously consider changes to the interpretation and application of zoning and building code requirements to make it safe, legal and cost effective to have people living above retail and restaurant facilities using our rapidly vanishing, but extremely valuable existing building stock.

Charles Olfert is the Architecture Canada | RAIC regional director for Manitoba/ Saskatchewan. He is part of an amateur Blues Band that practices in a heritage building.

The application of regulations typically discourages upgrades of this building as well as many others in the neighbourhood.

via Demolition costs more than renting a bulldozer – Journal of Commerce.