From The Archives
1917 Commercial Building
Rural place / Urban space
Commercial Style building currently contains 3 apartments and one retail/office space. Next door is a spacious garage/workshop and a gutted 1,000 square foot storefront which is in the process of being converted to an open-to-the-sky garden or courtyard.
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|Each of the 2 lots is 25 x 100|
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About the Building and Oberlin, Kansas...
The building exudes early 20th century style; an abundance of varnished woodwork and transomed doors characterize the interior. Several interior walls feature large "borrowed light" transom-style windows. An imposing staircase to the second floor utilizes box newels and square balusters. Large
double-hung windows dominate the rooms. A delightfully quirky feature is the original walk-in bank vault with ornate door and surround - yes, it still works!
Built in 1917 in the Commercial Style, this versatile building has Arts and Crafts influences. It has been used for both residential and commercial purposes. The building is sound with a newer roof, but it is in need of updated mechanical systems, wiring, plumbing and, obviously, interior finishes. It has a partial basement with exterior access. A steam heat system is in place, but needs a new boiler and repairs to existing radiators (or replacement with a forced-air system).
The most recent use was as three rental apartments (two up and one down) with a two-room rental office suite on the ground floor. With approximately 2,000 square feet, the building easily lends itself to conversion to a single residence (with the potential for an adjacent enclosed outdoor space) or business/commercial use. There is a yard and parking at the rear with alley access.
Garage and Garden Space
The adjacent lot is being sold with the "Young Block". It contains a 1940's era masonry garage and workshop at the rear and a gutted 1920's masonry building facing the street. It is being transformed into a walled garden space which could potentially connect to the house/building.
About Oberlin, Kansas
Oberlin is located in Northwest Kansas and has a population of approximately 1,600. It is a quiet agricultural community and the seat of Decatur County. It has two traffic lights. What it lacks in urbane sophistication it more than compensates for in safety, security, and freedom from burdensome rules and regulations. There are no building codes or "red light" cameras to discomfort you; people here are welcoming of newcomers and not prone to political correctness... as one newcomer recently said, "It still feels like the 70's here".
Want to start a business? You'll find the environment encouraging and hassle-free. Oberlin is big enough to provide all the basic services to its residents. For things that can't be found locally, McCook, Nebraska (population 8,000) is just 27 miles away. Need more? Denver is about 4 hours away.
Your Stereotypes Are About To Be Shattered.
What do you really know about Kansas? Remember the drive you took across I-70? Sorry; I-70 does not represent Kansas.
You visited Kansas City once? Sorry; Kansas City, in the eastern part of the state, is indistinguishable from any other big city - it does not represent Kansas, either. And the bulk of the metropolitan area is in Missouri, anyway.
You saw the "Wizard of Oz"? Sorry; that's Hollywood. Those who venture off the interstate to take a look at "fly-over country" up close are often surprised to find that it's not flat! You'll find gently rolling hills, trees, and sometimes dramatic landscapes amongst the ranches and farms. Why don't you know about this? Because Kansas has no idea how to market itself, does not understand what its true assets are and few travelers ever venture off the interstate. After all, it's a barren and flat wasteland void of anything worthwhile, right? It is that very mindset that has kept Kansas more livable than 'popular' areas... AND more affordable!
Archived in October, 2011
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