From Old Post Offices to Car Washes: Two Entrepreneurs Share Their Experiences Revitalizing Historical Buildings in Their City

Business Owners in Bainbridge Transform Historical Buildings

Two entrepreneurs with diverse backgrounds and ventures recently discussed their experiences in revitalizing historical buildings in their city. John Noel, owner of The Old Post Office, embarked on an ambitious two-year construction project to transform the 1914 structure into a modern bar while maintaining its architectural character. To achieve this, Noel adhered strictly to guidelines set by the city and historic preservation commission. Despite the rigorous process, Noel went above and beyond these guidelines to qualify for federal and state historic tax credits.

On the other hand, Willie Wimbush faced obstacles in making minor improvements to his Brothers & Brothers detail shop. He had to navigate through paperwork and cover the expenses of adding additional roofing and a drain, which amounted to $7,000 to $8,000. Although Wimbush encountered hurdles, both he and Noel agreed that the investment was worthwhile in the end.

The Old Post Office now serves as a popular watering hole in the city center, while Brothers & Brothers has evolved into a meticulously detailed car wash facility. Despite operating different businesses in different eras, both Noel and Wimbush shared a common perspective: that transforming historical buildings into local enterprises was an enriching experience that added value not only to their businesses but also contributed positively to their city’s rich architectural heritage. They both believed that preserving these historical structures not only enhanced the aesthetic appeal of their establishments but also played an essential role in promoting tourism and cultural preservation within their community.

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