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The Shop at the CAC

Size of Project

100,000 SF


New Orleans, LA


The Domain Companies




Historic Renovation


Completed in 2018




A haven of ingenuity.

Every venture, business, or “crazy” idea starts with a spark. But it needs a sanctuary—a place where it can evolve. That’s why Domain Companies selected RNGD to lead the development and construction of The Shop at the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC), a 100,000 sq. ft. comprehensive coworking space in the heart of the inspiring Arts & Warehouse district. As the perfect union of construction, design, innovation, and entrepreneurship, this 100-year-old building, and former K&B headquarters, would see the 3rd and 4th floors utilized, at last, converting untapped potential into a haven of ingenuity for New Orleans’ burgeoning innovation corridor.

Renovation and construction mode.

As lead contractor, our first challenge was developing a construction plan that worked around the building’s existing operations–and events–during the 10-month timeline. Our strength in planning, along with our partnership mindset, saw an equitable working plan put in place with the building’s staff, neighbors, and trade partners’ input. We attained a noise variance from the City of New Orleans to work evenings and perform demolition on the 3rd and 4th floors between 3 am and 11 am. With little space for laydown, supplies and materials were stored elsewhere. From there, we went into renovation and construction mode. Our team replaced historic windows on the south and west façades with a rigorous checklist-driven process that balanced a one-week per window install with the demands of historical accuracy. The unfinished elevator shaft was put into action with an elevator model that met multiple needs. A second lift was built to connect the 4th floor to the roof—steadily bringing these two floors back to life.

Enhance the setting.

Most talk about leveling up execution. RNGD does it. Literally. The monumental staircase, a central component, was designed to connect the 3rd floor’s impressive common space with the light-filled offices on the 4th floor. Our construction team laid concrete for the stage-seating base, anchoring the stairs. Then, we cut through the floor structure from the 4th-floor roof, allowing the team to tastefully expose the thematic and historical elements that celebrated the existing structure. But even as working features, the exposed building mechanics, ductwork, and electrical conduits still needed to function correctly. These components were updated properly by coordinating with both the mechanical subcontractor and designers to retool and update the exposed system, coupled with the installation of a new cooling tower.

A new way of doing things.

Entrepreneurship is at the heart of our company. Building out The Shop at The CAC meant other businesses could build from the ground up. And that fact wasn’t lost on us. But The Shop is more than a building. It’s a hub of promise. And it has the awards to prove it, including the 2018 American Architecture Award, the 2018 AIA New Orleans Honor Award, the 2018 IIDA Delta Regional Chapter Award of Excellence, the 2018 Good Design Is Good Business Award, and the 2019 AIA Louisiana Merit Award. These awards confirm what RNGD already knows and what The Shop exemplifies—that changing anything for the better starts with a new way of doing things.


2018 American Architecture Award

2018 AIA New Orleans Honor Award

2018 IIDA Delta Regional Chapter Award of Excellence

2018 Good Design Is Good Business Award

2019 AIA Louisiana Merit Award

RNGD really has a non-stop work ethic. There is no issue too big or too small for them to tackle. They never take the attitude of, That’s not my responsibility.” They will find a solution.

Chris Papamichael
The Domain Companies