Located in the West Bottoms, NSPJ Architects was selected to design the adaptive re-use of the historic Ryley, Wilson & Co. Building and oversee its conversion into a mixed-use development. During the first phase of design, the greatest challenge was earning approval for historic tax credits. Working in conjunction with a local historic preservation consultant, our architects determined the scope would require restoring the exterior masonry, primary structure, and replacing all of the windows in a historically appropriate manner.
As work started, a unique obstacle presented itself when a portion of the roof collapsed. In turn, this created stress on the exterior walls. Once the tuckpointing was completed below, the team took down the entire 5th story western façade brick by brick and rebuilt it to preserve the look and feel of the original building. The salvaged brick was used on the primary elevations with a closely matched historic brick that was sourced to complete the extra areas the existing brick quantity did not allow.
The intent of the second phase is to convert the building into 32 artist-style lofts to provide a viable live/work option for the neighborhood’s creative professionals. Uniquely designed to accommodate studio and exhibition space, each unit provides a comfortable area to work while allowing for separation from the living quarters, if desired. The existing loading dock will be repurposed into an outdoor entertainment patio to serve ground-level commercial tenants that will bring some much-needed energy to the block.
The architects enjoyed the collaboration between the developers, conservationist, and engineers to bring this once bustling structure back to life in a new way that typifies the revitalization and to make this old establishment a beautiful edition to the upcoming West Bottoms. Completion of the preservation is set for spring of 2022.
Zaibatsu LLC c/o Banta Property Group
BCCM Construction Group
Norton & Schmidt Consulting Engineers
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