Monday, November 3, 2008

Reviving Cincinnati: 4855-4857 Eastern Avenue

In March 2006, Tim and Mary Schap of Schap Architects Ltd. purchased a blighted office building in Linwood as a possible new home for Tim's company.

Looking for a challenge, the architects followed through on the rehabilitation of the condemned 4,000-square-foot building at 4855-4857 Eastern Avenue.

Although they expected a few unforeseen issues due to the building's age and condition, the seller had not disclosed to them that the building had been condemned.

"Three days after purchase when our contractors started replacing the roof, we were informed by the City inspector that the building was condemned and on the list to be torn down," Mary says.

But both felt that the circa 1905 structure had "good bones" and was worthy of saving.

The exterior is completely new with sage green vinyl siding, a 25-year asphalt shingle roof, a new HVAC system, new windows and doors, two decks, gutters and downspouts, stairs, and an ADA ramp.

Inside, the first floor boasts 11'-6" ceilings and bamboo hardwood flooring, and the second floor has been fully carpeted.

Bonuses spaces in the attic and basement are equipped with electric and gas hookups.

The Schaps also took great care to restore the existing Victorian cornice line and wood detailing.

After two years, thousands of dollars, and an immeasurable amount of sweat equity, the project is now completed and listed with NAI Bergman for sale or lease.

"It's designed as office space but zoned residential and commercial, so it's adaptable to a variety of situations," Mary says.

She has supplied the photos in the following slideshow, which show 12 before and after shots of the project.

Hover over the slideshow to bring up the controls. You may stop the slideshow by clicking on the square "stop" button, allowing you to scroll through the photos at your own leisure. To get a better view, click on each image to enlarge to 640 x 480. Photos will open in a new browser window.