Young & Vann Building
The Young & Vann Building is a three story, 28,000 square foot commercial building at 1725-31 1st Avenue North, on the southwest corner of 18th Street. It was designed by Wheelock, Joy & Wheelock and constructed in 1893 as a distribution warehouse for the Meyer-Marx Co., distributors of wine, liquors, cigars, and beers from the Anheuser-Busch Company of St Louis, Missouri. A two-story addition was completed in 1906.
The building was leased in 1912 by the Young & Vann Supply Company as their mill & mine warehouse. On March 19, 1913 former Avondale mayor Freeman Daniels accidentally stepped into an open elevator shaft in the building and died from a fractured skull. Young & Vann purchased the building outright in 1925.
The Young & Vann Building is recognized as a "contributing structure" to the Downtown Birmingham Retail and Theatre Historic District.
In 2002 Sloss Real Estate purchased the building from the Vann family. Cathy Sloss Jones oversaw the $3.65 million redevelopment of the building as the Birmingham Center for Regional Planning and Design. Chris Engel of Workshop 7 LLC designed the remodeling and Stone Contracting performed the work. The project was financed in part with New Market Tax Credits and a float loan from the City of Birmingham.
The Center housed the Auburn University Center for Architecture and Urban Studies and offices for Region 2020, the Regional Planning Commission, Cultural Alliance of Greater Birmingham, Alabama Partners for Clean Air, Scenic Alabama, and UAB's Service Corps of Retired Executives. It also hosted meetings of the Birmingham Design Review Committee. On the ground floor, the building housed an art gallery, called the Alabama Folk Art Gallery in 2007 and later managed by Lite Box Gallery. The building also served as the home of the Birmingham History Center's offices and history museum. A 59-space surface parking lot adjoins the building to the west.
In 2013 the building was renovated again for the offices of the Alabama Media Group, content providers for The Birmingham News and the al.com website. The design of the new office spaces was created by Progressive AE of Grand Rapids, Michigan. It reopened in March 2014.
- Nicholson, Gilbert (May 7, 2004) "Young & Vann building gets $3.65M overhaul" Birmingham Business Journal
- Coman, Victoria L. (May 20, 2008) "Birmingham-Jefferson History Museum may be getting a permanent home in downtown Birmingham by late June". The Birmingham News
- Tomberlin, Michael (March 23, 2014) "Alabama Media Group makes move into renovated downtown Birmingham building." The Birmingham News
- Photographs of the Young & Vann Building on Flickr.com