D.W. Ross brings architectural history to life – Ohio News

D.W. Ross brings architectural history to life – Ohio News


By DOUGLAS J. GUTH
clbfreelancer@crain.com

Someone examining the biography for D.W. Ross Co. may see only a successful family-run enterprise that provides customers with the building materials they require to outfit a business or home.

That description is not inaccurate.

D.W. Ross has been in the supply game since founder Charles Ross opened the doors in 1927, and the company does indeed distribute windows, doors and insulated panels to a diverse clientele including Heinen’s and the Cleveland Clinic. However, the company has carved out a niche that most distributors aren’t interested in pursuing — that of architecture and historic design.

D.W. Ross’ expertise in Cleveland’s historic building market has evolved over years of studying architectural minutiae that doesn’t exist outside of a sketch or black-and-white photograph. When a client is remodeling an historic home or building, the company is challenged with re-creating century-old window and door designs it either installs itself or provides to a builder.

The design process is meticulous, as final plans must meet established criteria set by the city’s Landmarks Commission, said D.W. Ross vice president Dan Ross.

“An architect will supply us with pictures from the commission,” Ross said. “Then we have to get our design approved through the local community development corporation. Our work is always changing from day to day.”

Ross can drive down…

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