About the Cascade District
New restaurants and extensive redevelopment has turned this former industrial area into one of downtown’s most distinct neighborhoods. The “loft lifestyle” is the key to the emergence of the Cascade District on the west end of downtown. Recently renovated buildings like the Knowlton Building were among the first in the area to mix high-tech office space with loft-style living space.
Like much of Rochester’s 19th century buildings Downtown, the Cascade district was a manufacturing area with numerous factories and warehouses. During the urban renewal of the 1960s many buildings were torn down for parking and new construction while others became vacant. It wasn’t until the 1990s that the value of these buildings, with their barrel-vaulted brick ceilings and expansive spaces, caught the attention of real estate developers. The exposed brick and open spaces of the neighborhoods old factories made them a perfect fit for desirable lofts.
The successful adaptive reuse of the Knowlton Building on Cascade Drive in the late ’90s changed the future of this once desolate corner of downtown. Demonstrating that there was a market for high-end residential and commercial development on downtown’s West end. Many other old buildings have been transformed into office and living space, and new townhomes have been built nearby, solidifying the Cascade District’s transformation from an empty industrial area into a thriving mixed use neighborhood.
- Restaurants, nightlife, shopping and more in the Cascade District
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