PROJECT TYPE: Historic Renovation / Adaptive Reuse
BUILDING TYPE: Office Building Conversion
UNITS AND APPLICATIONS: At least 20 different shapes of Magnum
Double Hungs and Round Top Windows plus
special casings, mouldings and lite patterns.
Impact glass was used in first floor windows.
ARCHITECT: Cho Benn Holback + Associates
CONTRACTOR: Struever Bros. Eccles & Rouse, Inc.
The building had stood empty for over 20 years, but locals still saw potential in the three pagoda-like towers, originally erected in 1887 by German immigrant and brewer John Frederick Wiessner. Humanim, a non-profit organization providing human services throughout Maryland — including the challenged community surrounding the American Brewery building — realized that the abandoned landmark provided an opportunity to create a catalyst for revitalizing the neighborhood. So designers, aided by national historians, local advocates, and Marvin® Signature Services, went to work.
An integral part of the building’s appeal lay in its windows. Although many openings had been bricked in or covered over, there were two remaining partial windows as well as historic photos to use as a reference. Meticulous research went into making sure that replacement windows would be as close to the originals as possible, with the partial windows used for muntin sizing and design inspiration.
All existing openings were to be filled as-is, so every window had to be built to accommodate the shifting of a 120+ year-old building. More energy efficient than the original windows, all new units were made with insulating glass with simulated divided lites, plus carefully matched extruded aluminum cladding to recreate the original wood exteriors including a heavy bullnose profile and a unique beaded profile. Where original, high-quality frames had survived the years of neglect, Marvin provided sash replacements.
- The American Brewery Building, on the National Register of Historic Places, was
honored as the 2009 Public Building of the Year by the Maryland Chapter of the
American Institute of Architects
- A specialized bead casing in oversized arch-top windows also required precise
matching. Marvin was the only window manufacturer able to produce the casing in
a single piece to fit within the allotted openings
- On-time delivery was critical in order to meet grant and tax incentives that funded
the extensive $21.2 million renovation