Retail Conversion Logotype  Made with Xara click on thumbnail to enlarge This beautiful Californian house was in a  sorry state, abandoned and derelict, when its  current owner first bought it. A lone  residential property in an existing commercial  zoned street - most people would have  demolished the old building and built new. Luckily, the owner decided to keep the  building and restore it to its original condition. The floors needed to be reinforced to  accomodate the additional loading necessary for a retail building. The first floor could be  easily accessed from the existing basement,  but, as the upper floor ceilings were covered  with beautifully ornate plaster, the flooring  had to be removed to provide access from  above.   Another challenge was how to reinforce the  existing stonework - this was accomplished  from the interior to avoid unsightly steel  plates and bolts being visible on the outside.   Handicap toilets and a ramp were added to  the building's rear to bring the building  completely into code compliance.