Ada’s Technical Books and Café
An award-winning conversion of a rundown old house into a small retail shop with a café.
Ada Lovelace was a 19th Century writer, mathematician, pioneer, and the initial inspiration for Ada’s Technical Books and Café. The impetus for the project was to create the “book retailer of the future.” Achieving this vision required adaptive reuse, an addition, and a pioneering approach to the neighborhood bookstore.
The challenge was to convert a dilapidated single-story Craftsman home into a refurbished, small-scale mixed-use project. Our clients were dedicated to creating a balance of the historic and modern, and support sustainable and forward thinking, so we imagined a building like an aged book cover with crisp clean pages on the inside.
The primary goal was to retain the existing character of the building, while providing a great retail environment that also functions as a comfortable and inviting café space. We were able to utilize over 60% of the original structure for building reuse, and salvaged all of the existing framing lumber for key fixtures within the space.
Contrasting re-used building materials with high-gloss interior finishes ties the building to its mission of a brick-and-mortar store that sells books on technology.
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