Osgood building restoration earns Maine Preservation Award

The historic restoration of the Osgood Building on Lisbon Street was acknowledged by Maine Preservation with a 2018 Honor Award, one of just 13 designations celebrating outstanding examples of historic preservation and revitalization statewide and recognizing the owners, professionals, preservationists and partners who make them possible.

The Osgood Building is a four-story, white brick building that rises above the downtown. Designed by J. Coburn and Sons, a local architecture firm, the Osgood Building was commissioned by Jeweler H. A. Osgood and clad with white English glazed bricks; no other examples of this construction material are known in Maine.

More than a century ago, the offices of law firm Berman and Simmons occupied the second floor, but as the firm expanded it eventually purchased the entire building, remaining as firm headquarters for over 100 years. Committed to staying in the building, the firm wanted to modernize the space to better accommodate current needs while also celebrating the building’s history.

Working closely with SMRT Architects, P&G Masonry, Warren Construction Group and tax credit consultants Epsilon Associates, Inc. the Osgood Building was restored in a sensitive manner using the effective Maine Small Project Rehabilitation Tax Program. The project saved and revitalized a prized landmark on Lisbon Street, and added tremendous energy to Lewiston’s ongoing renaissance.

“Taking vacant and underutilized historic buildings and adaptively using and updating them is an essential ingredient for community revitalization and vitality,” said Maine Preservation Executive Director Greg Paxton. “When completed these buildings lift the economics of the areas around them and the spirits of the citizens benefitting from them. These projects recall the history of their surrounds and our predecessors that built and used them, while filling current needs. And these well-built buildings can be feasibly rehabilitated, economically operated and energy efficient.”

Berman and Simmons’ Managing Director Craig Bramley underscored the firm’s commitment to the community: “The Osgood Building is a treasure, its history tells a story. We are honored to be its caretaker and participate in strengthening the city’s downtown as a reliable resource for its people.”