Developers Transform Industrial Properties into High-Rent Offices and Condos

Urban areas were once home exclusively to industrial facilities and manufacturing plants. When much of the industrial market moved out to the suburbs, however, these properties were abandoned or underutilized. Developers are now renovating the buildings into high-rent condos and office space. Examples of these projects include the transformation of an 1890 factory into loft apartments and a 1915 Ford


Urban areas were once home exclusively to industrial facilities and manufacturing plants. When much of the industrial market moved out to the suburbs, however, these properties were abandoned or underutilized. Developers are now renovating the buildings into high-rent condos and office space. Examples of these projects include the transformation of an 1890 factory into loft apartments and a 1915 Ford Motor Co. Model T factory into 120,000 sq ft of office space in Cincinnati. A developer in Kentucky also stripped a facility down to its steel frame and concrete floors and rebuilt it with a second floor and large atrium. The building now offers 230,000 sq ft of Class A office space. Unlike the new construction in many of the metropolitan areas, these buildings feature high ceilings, solid building materials, and unique architecture. The industrial facilities also offer exposed brick and ductwork as well as good access to major highways. When renovating these historic structures, the developers must comply with aesthetic demands to take advantage of historic tax credits, bring the buildings up to today's environmental and safety standards, and find the right type of user. Despite the challenges, however, the developers have discovered creative ways to preserve historic structures and readapt them for new uses like residential and commercial office space.

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