One of the big draws of Downtown Shreveport is our inventory of historic commercial buildings. Our architectural styles range from the highly-ornamented Beaux Arts (Municipal Auditorium) to the sleek and clean Art Moderne style of the building at 525 Cotton Street. The building is 22,760 SF, and features 15″ clear heights and vast open areas inside as well as dock door parking and an outside private parking lot perfect for both cars and a outdoor dining area/garden. The building, as a ‘contributing feature’ in our downtown historic district, is a candidate for both state and federal historic tax credits and capital gains benefits in the city’s new Opportunity Zone.
The 1939 building was designed by architect Charles Schwars and constructed by The Werner Construction Company, a go-to Shreveport firm responsible for many downtown Shreveport landmarks. The 1938 budget for the construction of the former Pittsburgh Plate Glass (PPG) Building was lauded by the Shreveport Times as ‘the biggest downtown construction deal in Shreveport in several years.’ Coming on the heels of the stock market crash of 1929 and after ten terrible years of the Great Depression (1929-39), seeing this investment downtown was a cause for celebration. The property itself was purchased for $28,500 ($1 a foot) from old Shreveport, Vicksburg and Pacific Railroad
$75,000 of the remaining dollars was budgeted for construction of the brick, concrete and steel building and the rest of the roughly $23,000 was for beautification, fixtures and other essentials, including a ‘novelty’- silvering the glass blocks in the front of the building to make the glass appear to be mirrors.
This unique building sits in the D-1-CBD (Central Business District) of Downtown Shreveport, and Uses by Right uses under the Unified Development Code include art galleries and studios, day care centers, industrial design centers, offices and a range of other appropriate uses.