Community Matters Cafe

Charlotte, NC

This renovation for the Charlotte Rescue Mission transformed an underutilized historic industrial structure into a welcoming, light-filled café supporting the Mission’s job training programs for people recovering from addiction. The café serves as a neighborhood dining and gathering space while helping the Mission’s graduates gain valuable work experience.  Occupying the historic Southern Spindle and Flyer building in Charlotte’s Third Ward neighborhood, the program brings new life to a structure which would otherwise have been demolished but is now a welcoming, thriving neighborhood anchor.

The primary design goal was to make the original building an integral part of the café’s aesthetic while creating an open environment to support the Mission’s training programs. The design preserved nearly all of the original building intact including the exposed brick loadbearing walls, wood rafters, concrete floor, original window openings, and original wood trim and cornice on entry façade. The cafe features a grab-and-go coffee counter, full-service restaurant, kitchen, and private dining room.