By Madison Irwin

1400 W 13th St is a substantial building on the corner of 13th St and Hickory in the heart of the West Bottoms. This building, formerly the Nook and Cranny Antique shop, has a long history. Built in 1892, it originally manufactured buggy carriages and did so up until the 1920s. In 1922, it underwent an extensive renovation, altering the original windows to the windows we see today. The renovation also created a distinct double-height space on the 3rd floor, intended for baking millions of biscuits.

Over the next 100 years, the building’s purpose became more industrial: manufacturing paints and cabinets and storing heavy equipment for John Deer. There were periods of disuse and near abandonment, as is typical for many buildings in this area, but with the West Bottoms in full revival, the way forward is clear and steady.

DRAW Architecture & Urban Design will occupy the 3rd-floor space, taking advantage of that fantastic double-height space and natural sunlight, the century-old biscuit gift. Commercial tenants will occupy the first and second floors.

The building is particularly distinctive and has its challenges! But the building is also the gift that keeps giving, providing intricate craftsmanship and materials that simply can’t be replicated today!

One critical design piece to this renovation project has been reusing as much salvaged wood as possible. Much of the structure is original to the building, meaning the wood is over 130 years old. It is nearly impossible to get this quality of wood anymore, making every scrap piece of wood precious. As designers, we have been challenged to use wood creatively and to celebrate and honor its value. In our grand main stairs, the wood has been repurposed as treads, allowing us to showcase the original thickness, color, and grain. On our staircase leading to the DRAW office, the salvaged wood acts as the treads and the stringers. The original patina is left on the stringers, contrasting with the refinished treads.

We have a lot planned for this building, and we here at DRAW are very excited to move into our new office!

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