Wight partnered with client Tangled Roots Brewing Company to deliver a popular new drinking and dining destination in Ottawa, IL, which is located approximately 80 miles southwest of Chicago, near Starved Rock State Park. Named “The Lone Buffalo” by Tangled Roots Brewing Company, this new brewery/restaurant is the latest addition to Ottawa’s downtown area, which is in the midst of an economic development wave, thanks to several local investors. Located on LaSalle Street, The Lone Buffalo is a contemporary, two-story 10,000 sf space that features a large dining area, two bars, a tasting room, and a private event space. Visible from the first-floor dining area is the brewhouse, which showcases two large, gleaming, copper-clad brewing kettles.

Wight provided program management, structural engineering, and construction management services. The team encountered several challenges in converting the two 100+-year-old structures into a modern hospitality space. The main building had a shallow basement when work on the project began, and there was a masonry bearing wall separating the two storefronts that were being combined to create the new space. Wight’s team oversaw the excavation of significant amounts of solid bedrock, along with major structural work, so that the interior buildout could proceed. Wight’s team also resolved issues with floor elevations and supervised the installation of all-new mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection services and systems.