aimClear’s spectacular Duluth office is legendary. Yet some may not be fully aware we’ve had another gorgeous office for years, right in the heart of old Saint Paul, Minnesota. Here’s the big news! We’ve expanded and moved our SP office to a dramatic new space (also) in Lowertown.
Lowertown is our kind of elegant jam. For those unfamiliar with the area, the name “Lowertown” hails from a historic steamboat stop on the great Mississippi, called Lower Landing. We didn’t want to move very far from this precious neighborhood we’ve savored for years. That’s why the new space is (literally) kitty corner to our previous Lowertown digs.
Quintessential Adapted Use Space
Our new Saint Paul home includes spacious conference rooms, comfortable work spaces, a totally sweet gourmet kitchen and much, much more. In collaboration with neighborhood steward David Brooks, we’ve designed the space to be extremely open, similar to the Duluth office, to encourage creativity and collaboration. The expansive ceilings and elegant decor blends old and new seamlessly. This is a quintessential example of adapted use space.
Pop in for a visit. Hang out in one of our break-out rooms or smaller spaces for group meetings and discussions. Kick back on the plushy sofa and catch some Zs. Need to burn off your lunch calories? No worries, just take a trek on our treadmill desk. For art aficionados, our walls are adorned with the vibrant, tasteful artwork of Alexandra Jacobs. There is so much to see, literally! Huge windows that span exposed brick walls provide a picture-perfect view of Mears Park below.
So if you want to enjoy the scenery or just people-watch, this it the place to do it. The view gets even better when you step out onto the outdoor rooftop patio, an idyllic spot overlooking the park, the Mississippi, and greater St. Paul.
There are layers of history all over the place in Lowertown. As Ferris Bueller famously said,
If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it!
Take a moment to look a little closer and you’ll begin to see the story behind this incredible area. The building itself has character and is reminiscent of a rail house. Called the Railroader & Stevens Building, it was named after John Frank Stevens, one of the chief engineers of the Great Northern Railway. When you enter the Railroader & Stevens Building and experience its architectural style and antiquity up close, you realize that once upon a time, here lived folks with a radically different lifestyle than ours today. The building is on the Lowertown Historic Preservation District registry.
Railroaders and immigrant families occupied the quarters of this historic, remarkable building. At one point, a fur trading company even took up residence here. Most recently, though, the third floor was home to Bellagala, which has moved down the street to the A’bulae Event Center.
Originally, Lowertown was designed as a warehouse district whose buildings were erected between 1880 and 1910 to support the booming, bustling Minnesota railroads. With nearby railroad tracks, we are reminded that Lowertown was once a major center for transportation, wholesale, and industrial manufacturing, when warehouses and depots were popping up everywhere like there was no tomorrow.
It’s THE place to be!
Today, Lowertown is reemerging as a cultural, urban hotspot full of panache. The area is contemporary and modern, yet a strong and rich heritage with layers of history is embedded in the bold, brick buildings that line the streets. Look closely enough, you might just glimpse the grandeur of the past in the reflections of the old-fashioned street lamps.
These days, the area is known for a growing number of edgy art galleries and snazzy musicians. Also popular is the local farmer’s market, just steps away from our building. During the day, Mears Park is a gathering place for hipsters, local residents, and corporate city folk alike, especially during lunch hour when everyone swarms out of their offices and flocks to the food truck lines. In the evenings, live concerts can be heard in the park with music thumping, bands jamming, and crowds rocking.
We feel incredibly fortunate to be part of the lively Lowertown community and having moved into such a spectacular space. It almost feels like a dream! Next time you’re in Lowertown, we hope you stop by to chat, catch some rays on the rooftop patio, and play a quick game of ping pong.