The two-story building at the corner of Irving Avenue North and West Broadway in north Minneapolis was once a livery stable, grocery store, dance hall, linoleum store and even a roller rink. Since 1979, it has been owner-occupied by Randy Lane and Sons Plumbing and Heating, one of the area's most trusted plumbing businesses.
Last year, Randy Lane and Sons decided to make improvements to its building and the results have been incredibly well received.
Owner Gayle Lane applied, and was awarded, a grant from the West Broadway Façade Improvement Program, administered by the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition. This popular program provides matching grants to area businesses and property owners in order to improve the appearance of the neighborhood and bring art to the corridor.
Inspired by the transformation of other businesses participating in the program, Lane hired Heather Doyle, a Minneapolis artist and owner of INDUSTRYelle LLC. Doyle previously collaborated on a façade improvement grant with West Broadway business owner Dr. Tara Watson on improvements to Watson Chiropractic (2101 West Broadway) and the newly opened Anytime Fitness (2104 West Broadway).
Doyle, a welder, designed and constructed metal canopies to replace the existing black cloth canopies. The metal canopies are attached to the building by elaborate metal fixtures, and strategically placed lights illuminate the artistry at night.
"I love old buildings. I did some research into this building's past uses...the final look of this project is inspired by the livery stables of old," said Doyle.
The building that houses the plumbing business upstairs and a Laotian senior services nonprofit on the ground floor, was also completely repainted. "We're very happy with the project. Heather and her team did a wonderful job," said Lane.
The INDUSTRYelle team included Doyle, artist-electrician John Stretch, a metal fabricator, contractor Bill Kordowsky and MBT Engineering. Images from the West Broadway Façade Improvement Program can be found at westbroadway.tumblr.com.
Randy Lane and Sons Plumbing and Heating
1501 West Broadway, Minneapolis 55411
24 Hour Emergency Service
3749 Chicago Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55407