Eden's Glory/Viva Mart - 811-21 8TH AV/801-07 9TH ST.

 Print Listing Historical Name - S.H. Kress & Co./Fashion Bar
Style - Modern Movements
Built Year - 1929, 1970
State ID - 5WL4110

Description - One- and two-story, rectangular corner commercial building comprised of varying heights and shapes, resulting in a choppy geometric appearance. Most exterior walls clad in stucco divided into panels; north wall on alley clad with brick. South wall (facing 9th St.) has two storefronts: west storefront is inset with a trapezoidal window and a slab door with two lights, while east storefront has two plate glass windows and an inset double door entrance with sidelights and transom. The east wall (facing 8th Ave.) has sections of inset plate glass windows, two inset entrances, and a curved awning with a projecting curved canopy with metal supports; vertically ribbed metal piers by doors and in window insets; piece of gray granite visible behind stucco at sidewalk level at north end of east wall. The west wall has no window openings; the upper portion is comprised of red brick (painted toward the south end), while the lower portion of the wall is stuccoed. The north wall has a narrow section of variegated brown, tan, and orange brick at the east end and red brick for the remainder of the wall; first and second stories have one-over-one-light double-hung sash windows with brick sills in groups of three and four; heavy security grilles over first floor windows; metal loading dock door toward west end on wall. Possible chimney at northwest corner of roof.

Historical Background - The current appearance of this building dates to 1970. The two-story L-shaped north and west sections comprised an S.H. Kress and Co. variety store erected in 1929. “A Guide to Building Records of S.H. Kress and Co. 5-10-25 Cent Stores at the National Building Museum” provides a brief description of the Greeley store: “The facades, with double entrances on one street [8th Ave.] and a single entrance on another [9th St.], are brick with terra cotta cornice and trim. The interior had pilasters with acanthus-leaf capitals and an ornate dentil crown molding with floral and chevron patterns.” The Kress retail chain was founded in 1896 and by 1929 had stores in about 200 American communities. The stores carried a wide variety of inexpensive items (4,275 different articles in 1934) and the finely crafted, brightly lighted interiors encouraged customers to linger and provided an escape during the Depression of the 1930s. The Greeley store closed in 1966 and the chain went out of business in 1981. In 1970, the Fashion Bar department store chain announced plans to incorporate the old Kress store in redevelopment plans for the northwest corner of 8th Ave. and 9th St. and the southwest corner of 8th Ave. and 8th St. Denver architect Richard L. Crowther of Crowther, Kruse, McWilliams designed the project. This location became an 11,500 square foot women’s store which opened in August 1970; the location to the north at 8th Ave. and 8th St. was converted into a fashion center for men and boys. Fashion Bar was established in the early 1930s by Hannah Levy and had operated a store in Greeley since 1936. By 1970, the chain had eighteen stores in several Colorado communities. In the 1990s, Fashion Bar began closing stores, renamed others as Stage outlets, and eventually went out of business. The Greeley building now houses a number of small retail outlets. John Dugan in “Greeley and Weld County” wrote that the Greeley “Kress building [had been] razed and replaced,” but a contemporary newspaper article in the Rocky Mountain News reported that the 1970 project called for “refurbishing and remodeling of the Kress Building and the building of an additional structure on the adjoining vacant property…” Some aspects of the character of the old building can still be seen from the alley to the north.