In 1926, Donaldson Transfer constructed a seven story fireproof building on Western Ave. Originally used for furniture storage, this facility was leased to Buhl Optical in 1948. Buhl manufactured a variety of custom lenses for eyeglasses and industrial equipment. In the early 1960’s Buhl sold the Eyewear division to focus on its growing industrial business. Buhl developed the lens system used by all overhead projectors. The Buhl Overhead projector was a staple at schools nationwide. Buhl, the world’s most diversified lens manufacturer, sold this division in the early 1970’s. In 1998, Buhl merged with a competitor and has since relocated to Rochester, New York.

     A young entrepreneur, Jim Genstein, realized the potential and beauty of this historic structure. Having recently completed a development on Pittsburgh’s Southside, Jim began work on acquiring the Buhl building. In 2004, the property along with the parking areas was developed by Jim’s company, NS Property LP into a new 35,000 sq ft office complex known as the Northern Light Tower.

Thank you to the National trust for Historic preservation and to National City Community Development Corporation for helping fund and make this project a reality!!