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Four development projects receive Golden Hammer awards for adaptive reuse
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Four development projects receive Golden Hammer awards for adaptive reuse

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Four projects won awards for the best adaptive reuses in the Richmond region.

The projects were among 12 in the Richmond area deemed to be the best in their categories as part of the annual Golden Hammer awards, sponsored by Historic Richmond and Storefront for Community Design.

The awards recognizes the best in historic preservation, blight reduction and neighborhood revitalization. Eligible projects had to be completed after Jan. 1, 2020, and be located in the city of Richmond or in Chesterfield, Hanover or Henrico counties.

There were 40 projects nominated for this year’s Golden Hammer awards, which were announced Thursday evening.

One of the awards in the best adaptive reuse category went to Hatch Kitchen RVA, which operates commercial kitchen space, production space, a cafe and offices for dozens of startup food businesses. Hatch uses three buildings in the Clopton Siteworks renovated warehouse complex on Maury Street in South Richmond.

Another went to the second phase of the Cooperage residential complex at 1654 Overbrook Road, where developers converted a former tobacco warehouse into 57 residential units. The warehouse didn’t have windows, and they couldn’t be added to the facade. So, the developer added an interior courtyard with huge skylights for natural light.

A third adaptive reuse award went to The Emerald Barn at 1620 Brook Road, in which developers took a former building used to repair electric trolley cars and turned it into office and warehouse space. The building became the first in the U.S. to be LEED Platinum and have net zero energy and be listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The transformation of the power plant at Lucky Strike building in Shockoe Bottom was the fourth winner in the category. Developers turned the power plant into the offices for ad and marketing firm Arts & Letters Creative Co.

Other Golden Hammer Award winners were:

Best Restoration:

  • Colonial Revival house at 508 St. James St. in Jacks
  • on Ward was restored and converted into four units. The mansion was designed by Charles Thaddeus Russell, who was born and reared in Richmond and was one of Virginia’s first Black architects.
  • Masons’ Hall at 1807 E. Franklin St. in Shockoe Bottom got a face-lift. The circa-1785 building is the oldest in the U.S. built for and continuously used for Masonic purposes.

Best Placemaking:

  • The JXN Project created to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Jackson Ward.
  • Low Line Green is a multi-phase project to restore neglected green space along the James River and Kanawha Canal.
  • Kitchens at Reynolds is Reynolds Community College’s culinary school at 2500 Nine Mile Road.

Best Residential:

  • The 805 Chimborazo Blvd. home, built in 1926, was restored as a single-family home. Because the home was originally built on fill, its foundation sank, and the house had to be lifted to add fill to ensure the home remained level.
  • The Villacarillo residence at 8219 Whittington Drive was restored to its mid-century design.

Best New Construction:

  • Homes at 1701 and 1701 ½ N. 21st St. in Church Hill.
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