multi-million-dollar condo towers, this is the place to go. The ReBuilding Center's steel-frame outbuilding and its concrete warehouse are both fun patchworks of housing material cast-offs and remarkable monuments to recycling. Don't be deceived by the seemingly haphazard design; the windows running across the top of the walls provide loads of natural light and a great design feature. Also noteworthy (and a hit with the kids) is the east wall's cob (straw and mud) portal.
* The ReBuilding Center recycles about five tons of house parts daily; this makes it the nation's largest nonprofit used building materials resource.
A remarkable commercial renaissance has taken place north of the Center on Mississippi. What was once province to broken glass and discarded syringes is now a unique assortment of small businesses, like Pistils Nursery (3811 N. Mississippi, Mark Lakeman), and at Failing and Mississippi, a large housing and retail complex. Returning to the ReBuilding Center, cross Fremont to the south and walk down the hill to take in the modernist Brandon House (Colab), which is on an oddly shaped and steep bit of terrain next to I-5.