Design Award Entries

Airship Coffee

The pumphouse, originally a water treatment
facility, sits within a neighborhood outside of
Downtown Bentonville. Airship Coffee had
their eyes set on the building for some time, and
brought on Jennings + Santa-Rita Architects to fulfill
their vision of a re-defined building which provides
space for gathering, serving the local neighborhood
and community. The adaptively reused building now
houses a coffee shop, restaurant, and bike shop.

Project Statement

The original pumphouse building, having been
abandoned for years, was in great part in need of
refinishing. Paint was removed and a new color palette
was employed, linoleum floor tiles were removed and
replaced, and the water pumps in the basement were
cleaned and repainted to become celebrated artifacts.
Entry was rethought to account for accessibility and
wood slats were installed to enhance the transition
between exterior and interior. The original glass block
windows and exterior brick were preserved, while
other windows were replaced with insulating glass.
Sphere-shaped light pendants are draped from the
ceiling in a playful pattern, providing soft light for the
various seating configurations throughout the coffee
shop. Outdoor seating was also provided in exterior
deck and grade-level seating. On-site parking is
limited. As a neighborhood gathering hotspot owned by
a company with a committment to sustainability, Airship
Coffee at the Pumphouse is intended to be accessed by
bike or by foot, rather than by car. Given this ideal, the
basement houses a bike shop, where visitor’s bikes can
be repaired and the original water pumps can be
observed. Throughout the project there is a coexistence
between the old and the new, with the connection
between people serving as the bonding agent between
the multiple lives that this building has lived.