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Local architects’ renovation breathes new life into historic Downtown Lodi building

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Posted: Thursday, September 26, 2013 12:00 am

A Downtown Lodi building where news was once printed, stocks were once traded and city bills were once paid has a new look and purpose. The building at 212 W. Pine St. was built for the Lodi News-Sentinel, which is now housed in larger quarters at 125 N. Church St.

The Pine Street building was later used as the headquarters for Beckman Securities. In recent years, the city finance department was housed on the site.

Now, it is a sleek and stylish office building, renovated by architects Thomas E. Snyder and John R. Della Monica with partners Tony Coyne, a contractor, and Greg Davis, a mechanical engineer.

The group bought the building in 2010, when the real estate market was near-dormant.

“With the slowdown, we weren’t real busy, and the prices were more affordable,” said Snyder. “So we made the leap.”

They looked at many locations in Lodi, but were drawn to the character and charm of Downtown.

The group gutted the 7,500-square-foot building and began a meticulous renovation. When the partners took over the building, it was essentially two large and nondescript interior spaces. New office suites were added, linked by a central atrium with a skylight above and custom tile flooring.

The front facade was transformed with new lights, a canopy, cornices and pilasters. The team left exposed brick surfaces intact, but brightened them with fresh paint. Pieces of art are displayed throughout the building.

Snyder and Della Monica’s offices are housed at the front of the structure, brightened by a large window that allows light to splash across an expansive conference table.

The partners poured substantial resources into the project, but they enjoyed substantial savings, too, thanks to pooling their collective expertise and sweat equity.

“We came down on weekends and did a fair amount of the demo work ourselves,” Snyder said.

The firm he and Della Monica own handles a range of architectural services, including the design of homes and medical offices. The firm has also designed several blood banks.

They do not tout a single style, but strive to adapt to the needs and vision of their clients.

Though they began the venture as an investment, they’ve been mindful of the building’s history, too.

“We’re excited to bring new life to the building and a different set of uses,” said Della Monica.

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