Sewickley building’s owners hope to make the best of a small space at 410 Beaver St. |

Sewickley building’s owners hope to make the best of a small space at 410 Beaver St.

Tom Davidson
This is an architectural rendering by Carmine Carapella of what 410 Beaver Street will look like when it is completed.
Tom Davidson|Tribune-Review
Architect Carmine Carapella, left, and building owner Diana Kauffman, discuss their plans for 410 Beaver St. in Sewickley on Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2018.

When Brad and Diana Kauffman bought 410 Beaver Street in Sewickley they faced a big challenge: Think small.

The tiny building there was once the Shafer floral shop, but it has been vacant for several years. The Kauffmans bought it with a big idea – to take the building down and build something new that had Old World style that would be attractive in Sewickley’s business district.

The space, which had been an alleyway 60 years ago, is about 11 feet wide and 80 feet deep. It will become a retail space with room for commercial offices on a second floor as designed by Carmine Carapella, a Mt. Lebanon-based architect.

“I was specifically looking for an architect who had a European mindset,” Diana Kauffman said.

She found the right person in Carapella, an Italian-American who said the building will be his most challenging project to date.

“Building a skyscraper would be easier,” Carapella said.

He’s drafted plans that call for two levels of double-height spaces that will make the most of the limited space, with lots of windows in the front and back to make the best use of natural light.

The building will have an elevator and will meet Americans’ with Disabilities Act requirements.

They’re hoping to start demolition on the present building soon and have the new building in place by next summer.

Diana Kauffman said they’re looking at tenants who will have a long-term commitment and business plan that meets Sewickley’s needs. Kauffman is also the vice president of the Sewickley Valley Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s going to be efficient with modern amenities and Old World charm,” she said of the building. “It’s fun.”

Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-487-7208, [email protected] or via Twitter @TribDavidson.

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