Garvin Design Group’s 1649 Main Street wins AIA SC Citation Award for Adaptive Reuse

December 4, 2020

Garvin Design Group received a Citation Award for Adaptive Reuse/Historic Preservation of 1649 Main Street at the American Institute of Architects – South Carolina’s (AIA SC) 2020 Virtual Design Awards on Thursday, December 3rd. This is Garvin Design Group’s 24th award for adaptive reuse/historic preservation in its 17-year history.

Occupied by successive generations of grocers and retailers for nearly 160 years, 1649 Main Street is among the oldest surviving buildings in Columbia’s Main Street Commercial Historic District. It was long home to beloved Columbia restaurant Hennessey’s but sat vacant for many years before it came into new ownership in 2015. Phased rehabilitation preserved the building’s historic pressed tin ceilings and hardwood floors and restored its early 20th century storefront on Main Street. Addition of a rooftop bar and garden level patio created outdoor spaces for the building’s new restaurant tenants, a key element of their continued success through the COVID pandemic. The newly rehabilitated 1649 Main Street provides a vibrant northern bookend to the 1600 block of Main Street and continues the revitalization of Main Street northward. New businesses in the building have activated the once empty and shadowy corner at Blanding and Main Street.

AIA South Carolina’s Award for Adaptive Reuse/Historic Preservation recognizes thoughtful interventions or restorations that create a synergy between old and new construction. The awards selection committee particularly praised the selective removal of the sidewalk along Blanding Street, which bathes the subgrade courtyard in daylight.

“We’re so lucky to be part of so many adaptive reuse and historic preservation projects throughout the state, and we’re honored to be recognized in a field of really amazing projects,” said Scott Garvin, Garvin Design Group President. “South Carolina architects are doing truly outstanding work and we’re glad to be designing in this moment.”


About Garvin Design Group

Celebrating its 17th anniversary this year, Garvin Design Group offers comprehensive planning and design services for a variety of project types and sizes. From master planning and programming to interior upfits and new construction, the firm strives to provide client-driven design solutions throughout South Carolina. The firm of 18 people has completed more than $900,000,000 worth of projects since its founding in 2003.