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Preservation News

For members of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Preservation Foundation and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission

2100 Randolph Road
Charlotte, North Carolina 28207

(704) 375-6145
(704) 372-4584 (fax)

Fall 1998 Newsletter

Historic Landmarks Commission Celebrates 25th Anniversary

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission celerated the 25th anniversary of its first meeting with a reception on August 9. Several hundred guests and dignitaries attended. Speakers included HLC Chair Lindsay Welch Daniel, HLC Consulting Director Dan Morrill, Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer David Brook, Charlotte Mayor Pro Tem Lynn Wheeler, Mecklenburg County Commissioner Parks Helms and U.S. Representative Mel Watt.


The Commission (originally known as the Historic Properties Commission) held its first meting on August 9, 1973. It now oversees more than 200 designated historic landmarks and a $1.5 million revolving historic preservation bond fund.

Croft Schoolhouse Update

The HLC has closed on the Croft Schoolhouse on Bob Beatty Road near Huntersville. This late 19th century schoohouse served the Croft community, and is one of only three remaining schoolhouses from this period in Mecklenburg County.

Allen Brooks of AB Architecture will serve as project architect. This will be a challenging project, given the current physical condition of the property. Accordingly, the first phase of the project will be to determine what needs to be done to stabilize the building. The second phase of work will be to restore the exterior of the building and prepare for mechanical upfit. Watch our website for photos and updates on the ongoing restoration process.

Gluyas House Update

The Landmarks Commission voted in its September meeting to seek approval to purchase the Gluyas House on Mount Holly-Huntersville Road through its revolving fund. The house was once the seat of a 236-acre plantation owned by Captain Thomas Gluyas, a Confederate officer, founding member of St. Mark's Episcopal Church, and a member of the North Carolina State House of Representatives. Rhein Interests has purchased the acreage around the Gluyas House for a residential development, and has offered to sell the 19th century farmnouse (which is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places) and 2.6 acres of land to the HLC.

A price has been agreed upon, and the next step is for the County Commission to aprove the purchase. If the transaction goes forward, the Landmarks Commission will survey the house, complete some repairs, place protective covenants on it, and resell it to a private buyer, returning the proceeds to the revolving fund.

Funderburk Complex Wins Award

Owner Terry Holzman of Stratland Development recently won a 1998 Chrysalis Award from Southern Building Business Magazine for the best historic renovation under $250,000 for his work on the Funderburk Commercial Buildings (the old grist mill and blacksmith shop) in downtown Matthews.


After purchasing this property from the HLC (which rehabilitated the exterior), Terry began work on the interior of the building, incorporating the existing architectural features and using historically appropriate materials in an office design. As the article in Southern Building Business states, "Stratland Development created a profitable investment property and restored a historical building that would otherwise have been a pile of rubble." In addition, the Matthews Town Board voted in August to designate the interiors of the Funderburk Commercial Buildings as historic landmanks (the exteriors were designated previously). Congratulations!

Website

If you haven't already done so, take a few minutes the next time you are at your computer to check out the Foundation's Website at www.cmhpf.org. The site has all kinds of news, essays on Charlotte's historic neighborhoods, a kids' area, Survey and Research Reports on designated historic landmarks, and much, much more. Special thanks should go to our Webmaster, Bruce Schulman, who has done such a wonderful job making this a substantive and user-friendly site. If you don't have a computer at home or work, you can sign on to one at a branch of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public Library.

Blakeney House Update

Work is proceeding on the James A. Blakeney house, a wonderful Queen Anne Victorian home built around the turn of the century on Blakeney Heath Road in south Mecklenburg. Mann Contractors is serving as the general contractor, and Don Yelverton as project architect. We anticipate that Phase One work should be completed in mid-December, and the house will be put on the market at that time. Tne new owners will be eligible for substantial historic rehabilitation tax credits. If you are interested, contact the HLC office today! .

Charlotte Trolley Receives Funding

On June 15, Charlotte City Council approved $19.7 million to extend the trolley line from South End into Center City Charlotte. This will include laying track, constructing a bridge over Stonewall Street and a tunnel through the Convention Center, erecting poles and overhead electric wiring to power the streetcars, building stations and installing landscaping. Expanded service is set to begin in 2001.

HLC to Seek Statewide Significance for Ratcliffe Florist Building

In an attempt to provide more protection for the endangered Ratcliffe Florist building on South Tryon Street (currently the home of Carpe Diem restaurant), the HLC voted at its September meeting to seek a determination of statewide significance for the building. If obtained, this determination would enable the HLC to permanently ban demolition of the building (under current status, the HLC could block demolition for only 365 days). The State Department of Archives and History in Raleigh determines whether sites are of national, statewide or local significance.

HLC Brochure

The HLC and HPF recently put together a brochure entitled "Historic Preservation in Charlotte & Mecklenburg County". The one-page fold-out piece highlights how historic preservation benefits our community financially, explains how the HLC's revolving fund works, provides case study examples of revolving fund projects, and summarizes some preservation tax incentives available to North Carolina and Mecklenburg County residents.

Post WWII Survey

The HLC is interested in conducting an inventory of Charlotte's significant post-World War II architecture. Previous survey efforts, completed in the 1980s, focused on the period prior to World War II. The proposed inventory would cover Charlotte-Mecklenburg's built environment from approximately 1945 through 1965. The HLC is currently seeking funding to catalogue these significant sites of our recent past, which include places such as Independence Arena (the old Charlotte Coliseum), Ovens Auditorium, drive-in restaurants, roadside motels, and many others.