Founding Stories - Banbury Place - EST. 1917
Cultural center of the Chippewa Valley for 105 years
V1 Staff |
Banbury Place has established itself as Eau Claire’s most well-known industrial landmark over the course of its 105-year-history.
Banbury Place is now a more than 1.9 million-square-foot complex that offers a wide array of space including professional office, heavy manufacturing, commercial warehousing, luxury apartments, and indoor self-storage units.
Along with a plethora of different offerings, Banbury Place has some of the richest history in the history of the city. Since its genesis in 1917 as the Gillette Safety Tire Company, the vast plant along the bank of the Eau Claire River employed thousands of workers and churned out as many as 30,000 tires a day.
Over its 75 years of operation, the factory had a substantial impact on the economic, social, and cultural fabric of the Chippewa Valley. With stints as a government run ammunition factory in 1942 to support the WWII effort, and adding a 77,000-square-foot addition in 1951, the factory made waves in the area prior to closing in 1992.
Eau Claire developers Bill Cigan and Jack Kaiser bought the property in August of 1992, renaming it Banbury Place and ushering in the now cultural center Chippewa Valley residents have frequented for the past three decades.