Some buildings live to have many purposes. Lloyd House in Menominee, Mich., has been used as many different things over the past 89 years but is currently being called home for families and seniors of this small community on the Upper Peninsula, thanks to an $11.1 million adaptive-reuse conversion. The town of less than 8,600 residents was in need of affordable housing for families and the elderly.

The structure opened in 1926 as a thriving local department store owned by Marshall B. Lloyd. Lloyd, an industrialist, sold the building in 1946, after which it was renovated for light industrial use. Eventually, the building was sold again and converted into a manufacturing space and ultimately abandoned. Ohio-based developer Woda Group bought the property in 2012 and executed an adaptive-reuse plan to offer 44 low-income housing units, retail space, and​ various life service programs for residents. ​​

Lloyd House, which came to completion in July 2014, was completely leased one month before opening and has more than 80 families on the waiting list. In addition to market-rate units, the community has reserved units for residents earning from 30% to 60% of the area median income.

Additionally, a local health services organization has been providing mental health services on-site. The Woda Group also recruited the Alliance Against Violence and Abuse to provide counseling and support services to residents.

Once the adaptive-reuse and restoration plans were announced for the building, the community began to rally around the project. In the wake of The Woda Group’s work, another company took on the conversion of an adjacent, run-down garage and has plans to renovate a theater building, located behind the Lloyd House, into commercial space.

The team rehabbing Lloyd House made sure to include windows to give residents a view of Lake Michigan and the local marina, says Craig Patterson, senior vice president at The Woda Group.

“It is a really attractive site,” he says. “When I first went there and saw the huge windows, because of how it was built to be a department store, I could see the marina and the water. And I thought if we could ever make this into residential [space], then it would always be filled.”

Project Details

Developer: The Woda Group
Architect: Hooker DeJong, Inc.
Major Funders: National Equity Fund; Michigan State Housing Development Authority; city of Menominee; Huntington Bank; Safe Mortgage Co.; The Woda Group