ap lofts, des moines, iowa
des moines

The best adaptive reuse projects build on the soul of the original structure. That’s the case at AP Lofts, whose 70 apartments bear witness to the concrete floor decks, mushroom columns, and factory sashes of the 1911 warehouse. Stripped to its essence, and repurposed according to the Secretary of the Interior’s preservation standards, the seven-story building’s original windows, infilled by a previous owner, were reopened and the sills lowered to take in views of the Des Moines skyline.

“We touched the historic fabric as lightly as we could with our new walls,” says Steve King, AIA. “Rental apartments have to take some abuse, so we kept the drywall simple, to stand in contrast to the rich patina of the original building.” Our judges applauded the effort to reuse rather than restore. “It’s romantic, repositioned for a second life,” one said.

View all 2012 RADA winners.

project credits 

principal in charge: Steve King, AIA, INVISION; general contractor: Andy Beal and Tom Hagen, Nelson Construction Services, West Des Moines, Iowa; developer: Mike Nelson, Nelson Development, West Des Moines; land planner: Doug Saltsgaver, ERG, Des Moines; unit size: 588 square feet to 1,532 square feet; site size: 0.45 acre; construction cost: $143.75 per square foot; rental price: $700 to $1,500 per month; units in project: 70; photography: Cameron Campbell/Integrated Studio.

product details

bathroom cabinets: BGS Enterprise; bathroom fittings: Kohler, www.kohler.com; bathroom fixtures: Bemis, www.bemismfg.com, Gerber, www.gerberonline.com, Lasco, www.lascofittings.com; countertops: BGS Enterprise; dishwasher: Fridigaire, www.frigidaire.com; doors: Curries, www.curries.com; exterior siding: Edwards Cast Stone, www.edwardscaststone.com; flooring: W.R. Meadows, www.wrmeadows.com; garage doors: Overhead Door, www.overheaddoor.com; garbage disposal: Whirlpool, www.whirlpool.com; hvac equipment: Carrier, www.carrier.com, Dayton, www.daytonhvac.com, Comfort-Aire, www.comfort-aire.com, First Co., www.firstco.com; kitchen cabinets: BGS Enterprise; kitchen fittings: Kohler, www.kohler.com; kitchen fixtures: Payton, www.paytonkitchens.com; lighting fixtures: Lithonia, www.lithonia.com, Juno Lighting Group, www.junolightinggroup.com; paints/stains/wall finishes: Sherwin-Williams, www.sherwin-williams.com; range: Frigidaire, www.frigidaire.com