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What is Old Can be Made New Again

What is Old Can be Made New Again 

Buildings across the country have fallen victim to changes in the market and the rise of technology. But what is old can be made new again, and these seven buildings are living their best second lives – repurposed and transformed into trendy facilities for today’s modern use.

Liberty Hotel, Boston: originally built in 1851 this building was a prison for 120 years and then later became a hospital in 1991. Today the building is the Liberty Hotel which did preserve many of the original design elements.

The Church Brew Works, Pittsburg: originally St. John the Baptist Church the building was built in 1902, and in 1996 was purchased by The Church Brew Works. Today the building is a brewery and restaurant but did incorporate many of the original building features such as the pews for tables, and bricks from the confessional.

Artscape Wychwood Barns, Toronto: once a streetcar and maintenance facility, built in 1913 has been transformed to a community space – for artists. In addition to providing living space for artists, there is also space for events, rehearsals, art gallery, gardens and an outdoor bake oven.

Central Library, Austin: originally a green water treatment plant that sat vacant for several decades in Austin. The 198,000 square foot building is now an LEED Platinum project that boasts a six-story atrium surrounded by books and reading porches with views of the lake and Shoal Creek. The Central Library is just one of the sites in downtown Austin, called Seaholm EcoDistrict.

21C Museum Hotel, Louisville: built in the 19th century, this warehouse was used to store bourbon and tobacco. Today it is a contemporary art museum and boutique hotel deigned by Deborah Berke & Partners Architects with 91 custom-designed rooms and a restaurant called “Proof on Main.”

Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center, West Chester, PA: this building was built in 1916, and once served as an Amory for the National Guard. When the building was purchased in 2015, there was only one working toilet, and the furnace had not been replaced since the 1970s, and no air condition or handicap access. The Knauer Performing Arts group raised $4.2 million to preserve and restore the building; today it is used for both film and live performances.

87 Lafayette St, New York: this historic old firehouse was built in 1896, and for many years it was occupied by Engine Company 31; it was decommissioned in 1972 by the NYFD. But by then the building had already been added to the National Registry of Historic Places, and nearly two decades later the building was purchased by Downtown Community Television Center, and the Chinese-American Planning Council for $400,000. It was transformed into a community media center that provides an editing facility, youth programs and filmmaking workshops.

For more than forty years, Knipp Commercial has been helping investors like you maximize their property values, while creating a beautiful space that you can enjoy for years to come. Our experienced team members are standing by, ready to assist you today. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Knipp Commercial


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