This project was a commission to renovate an existing storefront on Main Street Sarasota for a client to subsequently lease out to a retail organization. The existing building had been constructed in the 1920’s and had endured decades worth of add ons and cover overs that had obscured the spirit of the original building. Similar to the Clock Building, the major architectural feature of the building was a large cantilevered canopy over the sidewalk—an element that would be difficult to replicate under current city zoning codes. The building was constructed of red brick exterior walls under layers of aged plaster, terrazzo floors, and a roof/ceiling structure composed of heart pine lumber and steel beams- all hidden by plaster ceilings deteriorated by countless roof leaks and ultimately covered over by acoustic, suspended ceiling tiles. A small row of transom windows—necessary prior to the advent of air conditioning—was located above the canopy and painted over from the inside.

The solution once again was a subtractive effort to take advantage of the rich palette of materials already present in the project. The existing roof was stripped, and exterior rigid insulation added to the roof deck with a new single ply membrane roof installed over it. The interior of the building was stripped out to expose the wood framing and steel beams in the roof/ceiling areas. These elements were cleaned and sealed to accentuate the wood’s natural patina. The steel beams were painted, and a new HVAC unit was installed with exposed spiral ducting. Existing interior walls were stripped of old plaster to expose the brick finish, and flooring materials were removed to expose and refinish the existing terrazzo floors. The existing transom windows were removed and made higher than the originals to maximize the amount of natural lighting into the space. Structural accommodations were made to open the front of the building up as much possible to allow for maximum glass frontage, and the existing canopy was stripped and refurbished using aluminum fascia material and LED lighting—accentuating the cantilever form.

Project Architect / Designer: Dale Parks / Seibert Architects—Architect of Record