The Industrial Bank of Washington has occupied the building on the U Street and 11th Street corner since 1913. It was designed by Architect Isaiah T. Hatton, one of the Nation’s first African American Architects. This African American owned bank was forced to close in 1932 during the Great Depression. It reopened in 1934 under the leadership of Jesse Mitchell.
The design objective was to renovate the interior and exterior, including preserving the Historic Character as governed by the Arts CR District. The interior transformation focused on providing a more open and welcoming banking experience for the community. The lobby space was widened by relocating the teller line, relocating the offices, providing them with glass partitions to capture natural light, raising the ceiling height, removing the pendant fixtures, and exposing the concealed clerestory windows. A handicap accessible rest room, a new handicap ramp and accessible entry were provided in accordance with Barrier Free objectives. Stair access to second floor offices were redesigned to accommodate a wider seating area with a coffee bar and WIFI access.
The exterior renovation consisted of the repair and replacement of building elements, which had been neglected over time. The brick veneer was repointed; the horizontal metal trim was replaced with Dryvit, a lighter weight and lower maintenance material. The repair of the metal parapet and cornice reversed the decay and water damage sustained over decades. Windows and doors were replaced along with the installation of an EPDM Roof to assist with Sustainable Design goals.