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Transforming Historic Industrial Buildings in US Cities: 6 Buildings Adapted For The Contemporary Workspace

Many major cities in the United States are grappling with large industrial buildings that have fallen into disuse. These buildings hold historical and architectural significance and are often protected from demolition. Consequently, architects face the challenge and responsibility of adapting these buildings to contemporary functionalities. Opting against demolition reflects a sustainable construction approach and highlights the importance of honoring the built heritage.

These large-scale buildings usually have robust structures and long-lasting materials, which can fully benefit new uses. The large spans between columns translate into very open interiors, making them excellent options for cultural spaces, workspaces, and open-plan office layouts.

The following projects are prime examples of the revitalization of these buildings in the past years in the United States. These spaces become focal points for cultural activities, entrepreneurial endeavors, and social interactions, enriching the fabric of the city and enhancing its livability.

Johnston Marklee transformed a 1940s automobile showroom into a light-filled contemporary art gallery. The exterior and facade seamlessly integrate the building into the city's cultural landscape, while the interiors feature expansive exhibition spaces beneath arched roofs.