Adaptive Reuse of Buildings in Rochester, NY and Buffalo, NY

By: Justine Smith, New Media/Web Content Coordinator

DePaul aims to preserve the past and honor the future

Several of DePaul’s recent projects have employed adaptive reuse, or “the process that adapts buildings for new uses while retaining their historic features,” according to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The reuse of historical buildings, once community assets that became eyesores, is about more than renovating an existing structure. Adaptive reuse can:

  • Incite community revitalization
  • Create construction jobs and permanent jobs
  • And, through DePaul’s programs, provide housing and support for numerous people in need

Those are the goals of two of our most recent projects: the Carriage Factory Apartments in Rochester, New York and the Riverside Apartments in Buffalo, New York.

Carriage Factory old and current

Source of historical Cunningham Carriage Factory: http://www.s363.com/cunningham/

The Carriage Factory Apartments will convert the former Cunningham Carriage Factory (33 Litchfield Street in the Susan B. Anthony neighborhood) into a mixed-use campus containing 71 attractive loft apartments for income-eligible tenants. The building, vacant for 25 years, was originally utilized by James Cunningham and Sons for the production of carriages and later, motor vehicles.

By transforming the once-thriving carriage factory into housing for those in need, DePaul is utilizing environmentally-sensitive, green technology in construction and rehabilitation, including:

  • Energy Star heating and cooling equipment, appliances and light fixtures
  • Water-conserving plumbing fixtures and Green Label-certified floor coverings
  • A construction waste management plan to reduce landfill materials by 25 percent
  • Open floor plan on all four floors

Carriage Factory Apartments rendering- Rochester, NY

The building will take advantages of its existing “U” shape to allow for ample windows and lighting inside the apartments.

In the spirit of adaptive reuse, a Cunningham Carriage, similar to the 1920 Cunningham owned by Jay Leno, will serve as the building’s focal point, merging history with the present.

Cunningham Carriage


Similarly, the Riverside Apartments in Buffalo’s Black Rock Neighborhood will preserve elements of the old Riverside Academy (also known as Public School 60) in its transformation into 68 apartments for income-eligible tenants.

Riverside Apartmentshistorical and current with text

“This school will again have the lights on and carry on the stories that have played in this community, and will again be a centerpiece of city living,” said Gillian Conde, Vice President of DePaul Properties, Inc. at the Riverside Apartments groundbreaking.

Riverside School #60 Collage

Similar to the Carriage Factory Apartments, the finished Riverside Apartments will be environmentally friendly, with:

  • Energy Star-rated appliances and lighting
  • Water-conserving fixtures
  • Low or no VOC paints and Green Label-certified flooring

Residents will have access to common laundry facilities and an outdoor garden space.

Riverside Apartments rendering

4 thoughts on “Adaptive Reuse of Buildings in Rochester, NY and Buffalo, NY

  1. It is great to see DePaul work on the revitalization of these old buildings that have such rich history. There are so many neglected buildings that are in need of this kind of revitalization.

  2. Always loved this building. Was overjoyed to see someone bring alive its beauty. We would love to live in an upper floor corner apartment. We’re dying to see them. Hope more beautiful buildings like this will be revitalized for all area residents to enjoy. Thank you DePaul.

  3. Pingback: From Vacant School to a Centerpiece of City Living (VIDEO) | DePaul Today

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