When you think of concrete, you probably don’t think of furniture. Traditionally concrete is used for commercial projects that require massive amounts of the compound to be poured for driveways, foundations, etc. Now a local company is looking to change the way we look at concrete, by producing a series of forward-thinking designed products for the home and the office.
The company is called Solid716, and partners Jonathan Casey, Connor Crimmen and Jim House believe that they are opening people’s minds to the versatility and intrinsic beauty of concrete. The company started off in Connor’s garage, where the trio began to produce pieces for friends and family. Soon, word was out that there was a team that could fashion custom indoor-outdoor, resilient objects ranging from counter tops to chairs and benches. It didn’t take long for the team to begin experimenting with more complicated forms and eclectic colors.
Solid716 is currently one year old, and has a client base that includes the Marriott Hotel in Rochester, Canalside, The Avant (lead image), and a number of other heavy high profile companies. “Our biggest break was with The Marriott,” said Jonathan, who recently closed his business called Solid716 on Hertel in order to concentrate on the new undertaking. “It was Andrea LaMacchia at Envision Design who took our product to the hotel. After that we landed Canalside and Ellicott Development. We knew that we could offer a unique product locally that could be delivered right to customers. Instead of clients buying cheap looking, cookie cutter pieces, we offered them the ability to create custom pieces that mesh perfectly with their vision. The designs are as unique as the projects where they are placed.”
The owners of Solid716 recently purchased two buildings on Chandler Street in North Buffalo that they plan on converting into a showroom, a production facility and offices. “We love it over there,” Jonathan told me. “It’s industrial and artistic in its own way. We would like to dedicate part of the two acres to artists who are working on outdoor projects. We want Chandler to be a place where people look for inspiration. We’re going to continue to experiment with molds and colors in the meantime, producing works that will make Buffalo look great.”
With all of the new developments taking place in Buffalo, there are enhanced opportunities for spin-off businesses such as Solid716. I’ve enjoyed watching the progress of this business unfold, and am excited to see where it goes down the line.