The Lackey-Hord building in Alpine is getting a facelift, and in the process, crews have uncovered the structure’s original façade and cast iron columns.
Constructed in 1911, the building once housed the Palace Drug Store and several other retail enterprises, along with doctor and lawyer offices on the second floor.
Blue Wing LLC recently purchased the building, and original plans were to replace carpet and drywall and spruce up the interior of the corner space Needleworks vacated last year.
Said contractor Fabrica’s Greg Bow, “They needed a little bit of work done, but because we’re perfectionists, we ended up tearing up the whole inside of the building instead of just fixing it.”
The project snowballed from there as they uncovered historical elements such as pressed tin ceilings, original windows above the storefront canopy, and the original cast iron columns on the exterior.
“You see those columns all around Alpine in some of the older buildings, including the Avalanche building and Galeria Sibley,” said Bow. “We couldn’t bring ourselves to cover them up again, so the focus has turned to returning the façade to what it was originally.”
Although Blue Wing hoped to restore the exterior walls to the original brick, heavy damage to the components precluded that. Instead, the exterior was painted dark gray with cream molding, windowsills, and cornices.
Much of the exterior glass will be replaced, and storefront transom windows that had been covered up will be replaced.
The original recessed entry door, typical of early 20th century storefronts, has been restored, and a one-of-a-kind, clay tile entry floor will be rendered by local artists Amanda Calhoun and Gregory Teagarden.
Finally, Fabrica will install a new awning installed above the exterior transom windows and modeled after the original. It will feature a steel frame with pressed tin underpinnings and a metal roof. Bow thought the exterior would be completed within “the next month or so” on the length of the building.
According to Bow, although plans aren’t finalized, the upstairs will likely house short- or long-term rentals after renovations are completed sometime over the next few years.
In the downstairs portion, Catchlight Gallery will remain, and of the corner space, Bow said, “We’re not sure yet what will be there, but it will still be commercial.”