This model recreates Corporation Hall on South Burdick Street. Corporation Hall was a unique Italianate civic structure built in 1867 as an all-in-one public building. The ground floor served as the central fire station and the rest of the building housed the police department and village offices. As Kalamazoo grew into a city, the three tenants’ spatial needs grew as well. The fire department moved to a new fire station in 1908 and the police did the same in 1914. After that point the building was referred to as City Hall.
The city moved out in 1925, and the building was leased as retail space. At some point in the late 1920s the distinctive Italianate cupola was removed. Later, in 1936 the building’s new tenant, the J.C. Penney Company tore off the entire front façade and replaced it with a more modern one. That façade was, in turn, replaced in the 1960s during another modernization attempt. Although the front of the building was not recognizable, the original building behind the facade remained until 2012 when the entire structure, save the stone foundations, was demolished for a new development.
My model is intended to show Corporation Hall as it appeared between 1867 and 1908. After 1908 and the removal of the fire department, the large doors on the ground floor were replaced by windows. It conforms to the standard of my other buildings, allowing an alley in the rear. The façade and cupola make extensive use of jumper plates as well as bricks with studs on the side.