ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Christman Building Conversion Project: Another Example of Transiton and Upgrading

Updated on August 16, 2012
Christman Building remodeled interior
Christman Building remodeled interior | Source
Christman Building remodeled interior
Christman Building remodeled interior | Source
Christman Building with 1928 exterior
Christman Building with 1928 exterior | Source

Christman Building conversion

The Christman Building in downtown Lansing, Michigan, is an example of reuse of a former office building that was seemingly always part of the capital city. Formerly known as the Mutual Building, it has been a fixture on Capitol Avenue for many decades. It has recently been renovated internally, while leaving the exterior in its original condition. It used to house insurance offices, and was remodeled by the Christman Construction Company, a leading Lansing builder since 1894. It is worth a review because it illustrates a successful transiton from one corporate tenant and owner to another.

Migration of the company to the new site

The Christman Company has a long history in this area. Its main operation is located just south of the Grand River off Cedar Street. A previous locale for its offices was on the bank of the Grand, in a building now used by the Michigan Pharmaceutical Association. Like other political lobbies, this organization is attracted to the capital city to further its own interests. In this regard, it is not different from the bankers. manufacturers and retailers of the state. Since the former Mutual Building at 208 North Capitol Avenue was vacant, and since Christman was chosen by the Lansing Economic Development Corporation (LEDC) to renovate the building, it seemed logical to apply its company name to the building.

Interior Remodeling

The newly remodeled interior features some high-technology features one would associate with more recent construction. The plumbing and lighting fixtures use recycled materials and have won design innovation awards for being ecologically sensitive. A coveted "platinum" citation was reccently earned, which certified that the building was "green". 

The remodeled building not only houses various tenants, but also a major law firm and the Michigan Municipal League as well.While the building had been vacant for some time, it now is fully tenanted.

Financing and environmental considerations

As always with a project of this scope, there are important financial and site use problems to overcome. A joint fundraising effort was mounted, involving some $1,2 million of public and more than $6.7 million of private investment monies. An important point was the retention of 200 existing jobs in the building, and while not as impressive as the recent Accident Fund undertaking (covered earlier by this author), any generation of new or retention of old jobs in this region is most welcome. Again, "Brownfields" federal funding was also secured at the site.


This project is only one of many reuses of existing physical assets by the LEDC in the capital area. Clearly, the LEDC has taken an aggressive position on reconversion of what might have become disused plant lying idly about. With innovative solutions such as these, Lansing seems to be in the forefront of this urban planning initiative. 


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Media Magnate Mom profile image

      Media Magnate Mom 

      6 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Gentrified buildings always have such charm, personality and well... history. I realize, in many cases, these projects require more effort and funding. Bt who can argue that it's not worth it? I certainly don't want to exist in a place where all the buildings look like carbon copies of one another. Go, Lansing!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)