Here now, Past Lives, in which Curbed explores what some of the country's most interesting residential buildings used to be before they became what they are today. Care to suggest a building with a fascinating past life? Do drop us a line.
Throughout the five-season run of The Wire, the series became known for its willingness to meet beloved characters with tragic endings, one Baltimore landmark received an unexpected turnaround after its appearance on the show. Once an abandoned warehouse that the HBO series used as a backdrop for parables of urban decay, the Baltimore Design School, profiled recently on Co.Design, now introduces middle and high school students to the principles of architecture, graphic design, and fashion. Founded a few years ago, the public school received a permanent home this fall in the 110,000-square-foot former clothing factory, thanks to a $26.85M overhaul that came from public and private funds, including a grant from Adobe.
The coolest part of the renovation effort, aside from its effect on the community? It left many reminders of the original structure intact—the unfinished concrete walls in the student art gallery (below) are a great example—which now serve as lessons for fledgling architecture students."Had we fixed every space and put in ceilings and designed it—it doesn't leave it open to the students' imaginations," said architect Steve Ziger, whose Baltimore-based firm Ziger/Snead designed the project. "Being open-ended we thought was more important in this environment."
In light of this heartening development, fellow Wire fans, let's all take a moment to remember Stringer Bell—whose name may or may not sound like a piece of Crate and Barrel furniture—because his third-season inroads into turning around blighted properties didn't turn out so hot. Please though, refrain from waxing poetic about him on OKCupid.
· How Architects Turned This Former Set From "The Wire" Into A Training Ground For Tomorrow's Designers [Co.Design via Gizmodo]
· All Past Lives columns [Curbed National]