CULLMAN, Ala. – The historic Klein Dairy building, previously a creamery and ice cream shop, was established in Cullman in 1948 by Charles Klein as a part of his already large dairy business. Klein’s Dairy Products building was located on 5th St SE, which was formerly the site of Kullman Hall. It played a vital role in the community, replacing Kullman Hall as the site of social gatherings with various clubs, groups and churches holding meetings there.
Developer Shane Quick, also known as founder of Rock the South, is currently renovating the Klein building to utilize the 36,000 sq. ft. and bring more commercial space to Cullman. Quick said, “We know the demand for local companies wanting to move downtown, be close to our cities best local restaurants and to have a cool vibe for their offices and retail spaces, and even restaurants.” The renovations are set to be completed in late 2022. Currently, more than 70% of the building is pre-leased or under LOI.
“The greatest challenge is the overwhelming amount of work it takes to renovate a building as large as The Klein Building. She’s a fortress. The 2011 tornado that devastated our city literally hit the building and did little to no structural damage. The greatest joy is hearing all the great stories and found memories as well as The Klein families’ kind words about what we’re doing with the building,” Quick continued. “I’ve been inspired by this building for many years. One of my passions around commercial real estate is dreaming about what needs the space could fill for our local businesses, and how we can make it come back to life, how we can dream up things that inspire people to be excited about living here and moving here and working downtown.”
Quick plans to pay tribute to the history of the building and to the Klein family by continuing to call it The Klein Building. “Even the color white that we’re painting the building is a nod to the milk and ice cream that was produced when the building was originally built.”
He shared his desire to preserve historical buildings and honor the work of those who originally built Cullman, saying, “For my entire life, I’ve loved historic buildings. We are blessed to live in a city with beautiful historic houses and buildings—and what a gift, and I can’t think of a better way to honor the people who settled Cullman- than to restore our original architecture and breathe new life into it for generations to come.”
He concluded, stating, “With The Klein Building, it doesn’t get much better than a fully concrete and brick building. We are able to take this foundation, these bones and really add some modern touches that I know will serve the community well.”
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