Winkler Lofts started as a warehouse at 733 SW Washington Street. Owner Larry Winkler explains that it was the site for the Roszell’s Dairy starting in 1920, when the building was constructed. He opens the door to a large freight elevator shaft, leading to a compressor room above: evidence of the building’s most recent occupant, Winkler Meats. In a nearby office, a framed grocery store flyer offers up 10-cent heads of lettuce and 39-cent pounds of chuck roast, a reminder of the company’s origins. Over time, that corner store evolved into the distribution company, Winkler Meats.
Now the Winkler Lofts is helping to reinvent the Warehouse District which is important not only for its preservation of Peoria’s industrial past, but because its adaptive re-use will attract more young professionals—critical to Peoria’s cultural and economic future.
Photo: Downtown Development Corp.of Peoria president Micheal Frellinger, left stands with Larry Winkler, center, owner and developer, right Winkler construction superintendent Eddie Ballard