The Kendall Building Update (now 616 Lofts)

In March of last year I wrote about the Kendall Building. It is located in the center of Grand Rapids, at the northeast corner of Fulton and Division. You can find the blog entry here.  

I had intended to post frequent updates about the building, but the construction area outside of the building was such a mess that it was hard to get near the place for quite a long time. I think my overall excitement about this project started to fade in September of last year when the sidewalks and park on this side of the street were literally gutted. For a while pedestrians had to walk out in the street to get around the mess.

Complaining aside, we now have a finished building that is really very beautiful. You’ll see from the photo in the first post that the civil war monument was actually moved to the center of the park, and all of the trees were replaced with benches and brick sidewalks.

Below are a few photos of the finished product as well as some comparisons of the Kendall Building’s transformation.

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The Kendall Building

The Kendall Building

The Kendall Building is a place I walk by at least 10 times a week. It is large and hauntingly elegant. When I was 14, my parents would drop me off at Kendall College of Art and Design where I was enrolled in their weekend photography program. This is the building that caught my attention every time we passed it. Back at that time, downtown Grand Rapids was in bad shape. The majority of the buildings down here looked like this. I always thought about how cool it would be to live there, and how much history must be stored in there just waiting to be unearthed. It was announced a few weeks ago that this building is being renovated into lofts. This is one of the last buildings in this area to undergo this type of modernization. Because this place has had my attention for over 20 years, I thought it would be cool to document its transformation. Throughout the Spring and Summer, I’ll post an occasional photo to show the progress. Here is photo number 1, which was taken today.