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Adaptive Reuse

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By Compton Staff
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Two recent projects stand out for their creative adaptation of underutilized buildings (a former SCUBA school and a welding shop) into vibrant community gathering spaces.

Aardvark Wine & Beer’s Dive Baar

In the heart of Linworth, Ohio, the vibrant Aardvark Wine & Beer shop embarked on a unique construction project: expanding into a portion of a building that had previously housed a SCUBA diving school, complete with a dive pool. This ambitious endeavor combined the creativity of adaptive reuse with the practicalities of retail expansion, seamlessly blending the old with the new.

The project began with a building that, after the closure of the SCUBA school, had its dive pool filled in. This large, unused space presented an excellent opportunity for Aardvark Wine & Beer to enlarge its retail area and enhance customer experience with new amenities. The vision was to create a space that not only provided more room for product displays but also improved customer engagement through new features.

The first step was addressing the area formerly occupied by the dive pool. The design team transformed this filled-in section into the tasting bar. The original pool structure, now solid ground, allowed for the construction of a stainless steel topped bar with a prep area for a future simple food offering.

This new focal point for customer interaction and tasting events was adorned with a neon sign announcing its name the Dive Baar (double A for Aardvark), seamlessly blending into the store’s overall aesthetic while providing a cozy, inviting atmosphere for patrons to sample new wines and beers.

Land-Grant Brewing Extension

The second project involved converting an industrial arts studio into a hub of Land-Grant Brewing ‘s growing Franklinton campus.

Land-Grant hired Compton Construction to undertake the adaptive reuse of a former welding studio and blacksmith shop into a modern and airy bar, Land-Grant Extension. This project exemplifies a thoughtful transformation that replaces the space’s darker, heavier industrial feel with a warm, inviting atmosphere inspired by geometric designs, earth tones, and agricultural elements. Situated in the vibrant Franklinton neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio, this new addition serves as an expansion of Land-Grant Brewing’s growing presence, seamlessly connecting the Gravity Experience Park to the existing Land-Grant beer garden.

The project involved reimagining the building’s industrial roots, incorporating warm natural finishes that breathe new life into the structure. The previous dark and heavy ambiance gave way to a lighter, more welcoming environment. The design strategy focused on introducing geometric patterns and textures that evoke a sense of harmony and order, reflecting the organized beauty of agricultural landscapes.

Earth tones dominate the color palette, with shades of greens, tans, and ochres that create a soothing and organic feel. These colors are complemented by the use of natural materials such as bamboo, green tile, and brass metal finishes that have been treated to highlight their natural beauty rather than their industrial origins. This approach creates a cozy, grounded atmosphere that invites patrons to relax and enjoy their surroundings.

The bar area features thoughtful design elements that blend functionality with aesthetic appeal. Geometric design patterns are evident in the layout and décor, from the vertical green tiles on the bar to the intricate cork installation on the walls, and carefully selected fabrics on the bench backs.

Lighting plays a crucial role in transforming the space. The use of large glass garage doors allows natural light to flood the interior, creating a bright and airy environment. At night, warm, ambient lighting ensures the space remains inviting and comfortable. The focal point above the bar is a stunning custom chandelier designed and built by the building’s former tenant and long time Franklinton artist Andrew Lundberg. This emphasis on light and warmth contrasts sharply with the building’s former industrial vibe, highlighting the vibrant and welcoming atmosphere.

Through these transformations, both Aardvark Wine & Beer’s Dive Baar expansion and Land-Grant Brewing’s Extension bar embody the spirit of adaptive reuse, celebrating the past while embracing the future.

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