One of the most recognizable façades in Downtown St. Louis is getting a facelift. The 117-year-old Witte Hardware Building in historic Laclede’s Landing is now undergoing renovations worth $2 million.
Creve Coeur, MO-based Drury Development Corporation is overseeing the project, which started in September 2017. Pinnacle Contracting served as the
general contractor, while the Lawrence Group served as the architect for the project.
What to expect in the renovated Witte Hardware Building
The renovation will cover the following:
- Complete updating of the common areas, with new carpetry and furnishings
- Key card access entrances
- A tiled lobby
- Modernized elevators
- Upgraded conference rooms
- New restrooms
Tenants will be able to enter the building from the attended parking area at the rear of the building. This entrance will feature a full glass storefront, a new canopy, and updated lighting.
The first phase of the renovation has been completed for the most part. The second phase is ongoing, with a focus on reducing the building’s energy footprint. New heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems are being installed on the rooftop, along with digital variable air volume (VAV) boxes and energy-efficient LED lighting throughout the building.
Because of the building’s notable stature – it was built primarily of timber, bricks, and cement and was said to be the strongest building of its kind in St. Louis – several of its original features are being preserved and enhanced during the renovation. These include:
- The 6-story atrium that allows natural light to enter on every floor
- The massive, 16-inch-wide cedar timber columns
- Exposed timber in all the office spaces
- Restored “Witte IXL Square” trademark signage on the south side
- Ornate original doors with leaded glass on the west side
- Two original locking vaults, which feature the the distinctive Witte trademark logo
Sharing a piece of St. Louis history with everybody
The renovation aims to update the century-old building to meet the needs of current tenants – which include companies involved in engineering, marketing, financial services, logistics, and technology – while also boosting its appeal to the local community and others visiting the area.
The upgrades will complement the area’s historic and distinctive character as the only riverfront dining and entertainment destination in St. Louis, MO.
“We believe that this project is helping return Laclede’s Landing to the vibrant live-work-play neighborhood it once was,” said Tom Milford, Director of Real Estate at Drury Development Corporation. He expressed optimism that the renovation will provide more people with “the opportunity to work in a truly one-of-a-kind historic structure.”
John Clark, president of Laclede’s Landing Community Improvement District, adds that the renovation is just one in a series of notable projects intended to “reinforce that this district is the full package,” referring to the mix of recreational and office space located near the Mississippi River and the iconic Gateway Arch.
A legend among local buildings
The Witte Hardware Building is one of the most recognizable structures in Laclede’s Landing, the historic district that comprises the original settlement founded by St. Louis co-founder Pierre Laclede.
Built in 1902, it was used as a warehouse distribution facility until 1975. Its 80,000 square feet of space has since been appropriated for office and restaurant use.
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