Issue Background and Overview:
McPherson Hospital, built in 1926, was the first hospital in Durham. It functioned as a medical center until 2005, when the Eye and Ear Hospital relocated. A developer quickly purchased the property, asked for a rezoning, and unveiled plans to turn it into a boutique hotel. The property was subsequently sold to another developer, who reconfigured the plans for the building into a larger extended-stay hotel. By 2009, any signs of construction had come to a complete halt. In 2013, the developers asked the city and the county for tax incentives, which Preservation Durham supported. The project is slated to start construction in 2014.
3/18/13: Email to membership
5/4/13: Herald Sun article
5/6/13: Herald Sun article
5/30/13: Email to membership
6/3/13: Herald Sun article
6/25/13: Email to
The Trinity Park and Trinity Heights neighborhoods (recorded collectively as the Trinity Historic District) were platted at the turn of the century and experienced rapid growth and expansion in the first three decades of the twentieth century. Unlike other historic neighborhoods in Durham, which were closely tied to the tobacco industry, the Trinity Historic District, adjacent to Trinity College, provided homes for a growing number of middle class residents, many of them professors or staff at the college.
The neighborhood was overwhelmingly residential with only a handful of churches, schools, and three small commercial buildings. While the churches and schools were scattered throughout the neighborhood, commercial buildings tended to be located at the perimeter. The (former) Watts Grocery Store, at 1202
- Protective covenants put in place through EPF sale in April of 2010.
- Contributing property in the Trinity Park National Register Historic District.
- High-style Colonial Revival built in the early 1920s for Duke mathematics professor W.W. Rankin.
- Rehabilitation included:
- Complete rebuild of both the built-in copper gutters and the roof structure.
- Damaged slates on the front of the roof replaced with good slate from the rear porch.
- Rear porch recovered with a recycled-rubber replica slate material.
- Plaster and wood moldings, doors, flooring and more were retained and restored.
- Bathrooms and kitchen fully updated, but many features were retained and restored, including the floor tile, tubs, and built-in cabinets.
Hundreds of Preservation Durham members and friends of historic preservation in Durham attended the 11th Annual Old Durham Tour of the Trinity Neighborhoods west of Downtown. Read more about the Trinity area on our Historic Neighborhoods pages! Advance ticket buyers were able to exchange their tickets for a tour guidebook and map when they arrived at the tour area. On the day of the tour, tickets were sold only at two tour locations. Tour-goers enjoyed the tour at their own pace, exploring the neighborhoods that grew up in the early 20th century around Trinity College, now Duke University’s East Campus. Tour tickets included admission to all the homes on the tour. Each building on the tour was staffed by friendly and