One of the most notable pieces of architecture in Novato, the long-empty Birkenstock building at the north end of Redwood Boulevard, will have a tenant again this fall.
Who is it? Birkenstock.
The North Bay Business Journal reports that the German footwear company is vacating its Hamilton Landing office space in southern Novato for the 135,000-square foot distribution center just west of Highway 101 on the eastern foot of Mount Burdell.
The five-year lease for the Hamilton space was set to expire this year, the North Bay Business Journal reported.
The buildings at 8171 North Redwood Boulevard, constructed in 1962-64, are noted for their angular rooflines, which make them look a little bit like the Statue of Liberty's crown. Prior to Birkenstock, McGraw-Hill Publishing occupied the space until about 1992 when the footwear company moved up from its previous location in Bel Marin Keys. The buildings had served as one of four U.S. regional distribution centers for McGraw-Hill, one of the biggest publishing companies in the country.
Birkenstock USA has been based in Marin since 1971 after Margot Fraser and her husband saw room for a comfortable German-made shoe in the U.S. footwear market. After 15 years at the site, the company found it necessary to streamline the operation by transferring its distribution function to Kentucky and having to lay off about 50 workers.
Are you glad the old building will be occupied again? Are you bummed about Birkenstock's impending move from Hamilton? Add a comment below.
For more about the history of the Birkenstock building on North Redwood Boulevard, from the Novato Patch archives.