Pence Building, Minneapolis

8th St facade-after

In 1908 a young, energetic entrepreneur, Harry Pence, purchased land at 800 Hennepin Avenue to build the headquarters of his newest business endeavor, the Pence Automobile Company.  Pence grew his business to become one the first and largest Buick dealers in the country.

Over the years, the building has been home to other businesses including Minneapolis Gas and Light Company, Lincoln National Bank, and the Carmichael Lynch Advertising Agency.  When the Agency moved out in 2007, the future of the vacant building was in question, until Turnstone 800 Partners decided to rehabilitate the Pence building into a multi-tenant office property.  Today the building stands proud among many renovated buildings in and around the area and it serves as an important connection between the buildings in the Warehouse District and the Central Business District of Downtown Minneapolis.  Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the Turnstone 800 Partners utilized federal historic tax credits to help finance the project.

The eight-story Pence building was originally designed by the architectural firm of Long and Kees who also designed other notable downtown properties similar in style such as the Lumber and Flour Exchange buildings.  The handsome historic exterior appearance of the Pence building has stood the test of time and features the use of granite and terra-cotta.  New display and office windows that are in keeping with the dimensions, style, and materials of the originals, have been installed. On the interior, the original ceiling heights and the cast-concrete structural elements have been revealed and the newly created common areas of the office building enhance and compliment the historic nature and feel of the building.

For ensuring the Pence drives ahead as a Minneapolis landmark in showroom condition, we recognize the project participants with a 2011 Minnesota Preservation Award.

Windows-installation during rehab-detail

Window installation during rehabilitation of the Pence Building

Owner: Turnstone 800 Partners LLC; Contractors: Diversified Construction; Historical Consultant: Hess, Roise and Company