The renovation taking place at 2401 Larimer St. is not your average office or retail conversion, and the business going into the property is not your average tech startup. When it is complete next year, this quirky 1938 building, often overlooked by passersby, will become a high-tech hydroponic farm that will sell freshly grown produce directly to consumers through an on-site market and restaurant concept called Farm & Market.
Breedlove Capital, the family-owned investment firm funding the startup, knows there may have been easier buildings and locations in which to launch the flagship Farm & Market concept, but the transformation at this location was about seeing a need and recognizing potential.
“This location was essentially a donut hole in the urban fabric at the gateway to the Ballpark and Five Points neighborhoods,” said Breedlove Capital Co-Founder Stephanie Breedlove. “We saw an opportunity to bring in a concept that would directly address needs in an area that has long been a produce desert. This area of the city is growing rapidly. You have thousands of people living within a six-block radius and few options for fresh produce. Farm & Market will put residents within walking distance of a working farm.”
Breedlove Capital engaged OZ Architecture in April to help them reimagine the property while retaining its historic footprint and character. The 6,135-square-foot building was, at one time in its history, the home of the Colorado Potato Grower’s Exchange. “In this sense, we’re actually returning the building to its roots,” said Breedlove.
The design team at OZ first looked at context. While the building is humble in its presence, it is located at a prominent position in the neighborhood at the intersection of Larimer Street and Broadway. Thousands of cars pass this location each day, presenting an opportunity to not only invite pedestrians into the food-growing process but to provide a view into the farm for passing drivers.
“We wanted this space to truly feel like it was a neighborhood asset,” Breedlove added. “This area has plenty of rooftop bars. We envision this as more of a gathering place for the community across demographics.”
Read the complete article at www.milehighcre.com.