Since 1995, FareStart has operated as a training center and restaurant where homeless individuals receive job training in the food service industry. In 2004, FareStart bought the three-story building at Seventh and Virginia to expand its teaching program by doubling the 225 students it trains annually. Originally built in 1923, the building had previously housed a sports bar and music club and required a major renovation in order to accommodate FareStart’s operations. Our firm performed seismic upgrades that involved the use of steel-braced frames and concrete shear walls. The majority of the building’s interior required demolishing and the entire wooden rooftop was rebuilt and structurally reinforced to support new mechanical equipment. A unique highlight of the renovation originated from salvaging the existing building’s heavy timber ceiling beams. Two of these beams were repurposed into a communal table that now serves as the centerpiece to FareStart’s main dining room.
SMR Architects, Sellen Construction