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Colonial Warehouse Adds Bright New Upgrades To Exterior

One of the North Loop’s most iconic and historic buildings is now brighter at night and easier to navigate by day thanks to a major improvement project, completed this week. Colonial Warehouse, built in 1885, has all-new exterior lighting as well as a new canopy over the Third Avenue entrance.

“It serves two purposes,” said Mitch Kall of Modern Commercial Real Estate, which manages the building. “It makes the street not only look more friendly but safer because we have more adequate lighting out there. It looks more appealing to the eye and, in my opinion, more light creates more safety for residents walking in the neighborhood.”

Colonial Warehouse is best known for street-level businesses like MartinPatrick3, Statement Boutique and Sweetgreen, but there are several commercial tenants in other parts of the building as well, and it hasn’t always been easy for visitors to find them. That’s where the new, more prominent canopy comes in.

The new lights also showcase what’s left of an old water tower on the north end of the building.

Historic photos, courtesy of Hennepin County Library, show how the tower used to look.

It’s not clear when the water tank was removed from the tower, but it was still visible in the aerial photo above, on file with the Hennepin County Library from the 1930s.

The new north end lighting also highlights the bricked-in faux windows that were visible in this 1891 photo of the 2nd Street bridge.

By Mike Binkley, North Loop volunteer

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