Peavey–Haglin Experimental Concrete Grain Elevator

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Peavey–Haglin Experimental Concrete Grain Elevator

The Peavey–Haglin Experimental Concrete Grain Elevator, built in 1899–1900, was the first circular concrete grain elevator in the United States, and possibly in the world. It is notable for proving the viability of concrete in grain elevator construction. Previous grain elevators, being built of wood, were expensive to build and vulnerable to fire. The elevator is located near the interchange of Highway 7 and Highway 100 in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. It was located along the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railway.

The structure was commissioned by Frank Peavey, owner of a major grain company, and engineered by Charles F. Haglin, a Minneapolis contractor who also built the Minneapolis City Hall, the Grain Exchange Building, the Pillsbury Building, and the Radisson Hotel. The elevator was built by pouring concrete into wooden forms braced by steel hoops. The engineers were initially hesitant about how much pressure the structure could withstand, so they ordered the structure capped at 68 feet (21 m). After an initial test of filling the elevator and then emptying it proved successful, the elevator was later built to its present height of 125 feet (38 m). The inside diameter is 20 feet (6.1 m), and the walls are 12 inches (300 mm) thick at the base, tapering to 8 inches (200 mm) thick at the top.

After the initial experiments proved successful, the Peavey–Haglin elevator never held grain again, but its design paved the way for more concrete grain elevators across the United States.

The elevator once served as a sign for a lumber store. It now carries the sign for Nordic Ware.