The Building Project

Making the move cross country is a big deal, but buying a historic building sight unseen, well that is crazy and who in their right mind would do such a thing? I did... and here is the introduction to my latest project.

I had been on the hunt for a new hometown for the better part of two years, life changes, and sometimes you just need to start somewhere fresh. After crisscrossing the country for stories, by car and motorcycle, I set my sights on two parts of the country. Charlotte, North Carolina and Central Texas around Waco. Both had a lot to offer, good access to motorsports, airports, and lots of new places to explore.

I decided I wanted an old downtown building, something I could turn into a live/work space. The appeal of a big empty warehouse-like space has always appealed to me. I was finding more of what I was looking for in Texas and I focused my search in the area around Waco, where I found several buildings listed for sale. After three different trips to Texas to scope out the towns, I found the town of Groesbeck.

Groesbeck is a small town about 40 miles from Waco. The listing for the building in the heart of downtown was so low I thought it must have been a typo. But after a few calls and emails, a deal was struck and I wired the money to the title company for escrow. After a few weeks, I was the proud owner of a historic building on Navasota Street. 

Founded in 1869 the township of Groesbeck became the county seat of Limestone County in 1873 and is home to the "Million Dollar Courthouse." The city was founded by the railroad, became a center for brickmaking (hence the brick roads downtown), but has mostly been known for agriculture and light industry. Thankfully the town is large enough to have a good selection of restaurants, a real grocery store, and a hospital.

As for the building itself, well it is known locally as "The White Building" and has been empty for a number of years. a hole in the roof meant that the previous occupants packed up and left. They even left their typewriters on the desks. The plan so far is to get the building cleaned out, the massive hole in the roof fixed, and to install a larger door in the back of the building. 

I will be chronicling the restoration and buildout here on the site, starting next week with the cleanup. After sitting largely abandoned for so many years the building is filled with junk from 1970s-1990s, mostly all water-damaged and broken. It really isn't as bad as it looks and it should be a fun project. Be sure to follow along as I take this forgotten old building and turn it into something incredible.

Check out my YouTube video below about moving to Texas and exploring the building for the first time below.