Abandoned buildings that are structurally sound can often be repurposed rather than demolished. See 7 awesome examples of abandoned properties that were repurposed into something great. Enjoy!
1. Old Barn Stable Becomes a Home
This abandoned barn stable, located in Cáceres, Spain, was repurposed into a comfortable family home by the Abaton architectural firm.
2. Clevelands FirstEnergy Powerhouse Turned Aquarium
Via: Larry Hamill
In January 2012, the Cleveland Aquarium made its debut in the building that once housed the city's FirstEnergy Powerhouse, an old power-generating plant for streetcars and railways. The building is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Instead of demolishing the building, Cleveland reimagined the building as an aquarium, with exhibits that feature aquatic life from every corner of the globe.
3. A McAllen Texas Wal-Mart Becomes a Library
The city of McAllen, Texas inherited this former Wal-Mart after the store was shut down and abandoned. However, instead of demolishing the building, it was decided that it would be reused to create a library from the city. Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle, Ltd (an architectural design company out of Minneapolis) was enlisted to redesign the interior of the building in a functional and affordable way. The finished product would be the McAllen Public Library, pictured above. It is also the largest single-story location in all of the US, with the interior measuring in at 124,500 sq feet, the size of 2 1/2 football fields. In 2012, the McAllen Public Library won the Library Interior Design Competition. It is the perfect example of a building that actually benefited more from not being demolished.
4. The Buenos Aires Grand Splendid Library
The El Ateno Grand Splendid Library in Buenos Aires, Argentina is very much a piece of art in building form. Previously known as the Teatro Grand Splendid (a theater), this one of a kind bookstore is a site people travel from all over the world to see. The bookstore features a large music section, a café, beautifully ornate detailing in the ceiling, and a theater box which has been cleverly converted into a reading area. People often visit El Ateno just to marvel at its size, glamorous set-up, and unique structure.
5. Higbee's Department Store Becomes The Horseshoe Casino
If you are familiar with "A Christmas Story", you'll probably recognize this building. This was once Higbee's Department store, a popular shopping venue in the city of Cleveland. However, it has since been repurposed into the Horseshoe Casino, a smart choice considering that the large building would have cost the city of Cleveland an arm and a leg to demolish.
6. Detroit's John King Books
In the 1940's, this building was used as a glove factory in Detroit, Michigan. Since then, John King Books, a used and rare book shop, has taken its place. The building may look a bit downtrodden on the outside, but inside it's one of the best places around to buy a used or rare book. There are five stories of books, and many of the original factory signs are still in place.
7. Church Converted into a House
This beautiful 5113 square ft home in Utrecht, Holland began its existence as the St. Jakobus Church. After the church was abandoned, an architectural design company called Zecc Architects decided to restore the property in a way where it could easily be turned back into a church if necessary.