Friday, July 15, 2016

Inside a Can Factory

Today I got a peek at the Silgan Container factory building. It's a 480,000-square-foot former can factory on Prior Avenue in St. Paul. I've been past it before; it seemed derelict, even in recent months, but that is completely wrong.


Not only is it home to a future artist-designed, indoor mini-golf course (with a bar for all the hoped-for millennial customers), its other tenants include a new brewery called Black Stack, a sculptor's studio and gallery, a coffee roaster, and a manufacturer of small travel trailers.

I happened to see one of the proposed renderings of packaging for the Black Stack beer cans, and they are beautiful. The brand is named for the giant smokestack just outside the door of the brewery with its brand-new windows overlooking the front parking lot.

The travel trailers, made by Vistabule, are teardrop-shaped:


They're made of wood and have a fold-up Queen-size bed near the front and tiny kitchen in the back. You cook while standing under that open hatchback, which keeps the rain and sun off of you. Storage is tucked in anywhere you can think of.

I only got one photo of Can Can Wonderland, the mini-golf course:


It's very much a work in progress of bringing together lots of different artists and ideas in a space with great light, as you can see here.

Up on the many floors of the "brick and beam" building shown in the photo at the top, I saw this great sign near one of the freight elevators:



I know the next time I see the building, I won't recognize it because it will have been transformed. I look forward to it, but I'm glad I got to see it when it was mostly still as it was.

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Here are a couple of other stories about the buildings:

Twin Cities Urban Recon

Creative Enterprise Zone write up on Can Can Wonderland


1 comment:

Tracy Buck said...

Looks like something fun we can do when we come up to visit :)