Fig & Barrel Pub

“It had to be old.”

The Fig & Barrel Pub building, located in the Historical Architectural Review Board (HARB) district for the City of York, was 110 years old by the time RLPS had the opportunity to help the new owners shape it. Originally built by the York Traction Company (which would later become York Railways Company) and subsequently the home for the Edison Light & Power Company, the building itself is full of history. The interior fit-out for this adaptive reuse honors both the history housed within the brick walls and the vision of the new owners.

“It had to be authentic.”

The Fig & Barrel Pub couldn’t look or feel like just any pub. Like the bitters and pizzas made from scratch within the Pub, the building needed to feel authentic to both the city that was built around it and the business it now houses. Lighting selections remind patrons of the history of the building, evoking a turn-of-the-century feel. A tall fireplace feature was added and designed to reflect the historic industrial feel. Hard and soft seating of varied heights in bold colors complement the rustic wood of the tables and bar; the bar itself features a floor to ceiling rolling library ladder, turning the liquor stock into a display. A new production kitchen, complete with a wood-fired oven, rounds out the renovation.

“It had to have loads of history.”

The original brick was restored and turned into a feature of the interior. Instead of covering it up and modernizing it, the whole design rests on the historical material. While the building needed updating, it was important that it didn’t look like it had been modernized. On the outside facing Cherry Lane, the historic building plaque is still proudly displayed. Ultimately, this space meets the owner’s criteria that it “had to be old, it had to be authentic, and it had to have loads of history.”

Photo Credit:  Matthew Tennison Photography

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