Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Durham Arts Council, 120 Morris Street
The Gamble House, 1307 N Mangum Street
Owners: Charlene Reiss and Mark Hazelrigg
Contractor: Kevin Svara of Svara Restoration
Durham’s first Modernist building and one of only a very few International Style buildings in the city, the Gamble House is a standout in Durham’s architectural history. It was built in 1935 by Richard Dillard’s daughter, Paul, and her husband, Howard Gamble. Some incompatible renovations in the 1950s were reversed during a restoration in the 1970s, when then-owner Gerard Tempest removed the Permastone that had been applied the lower half of the smooth, white walls of the dwelling. Tempest also listed it in the National Register of Historic Places. Years later, the house languished once again and entered foreclosure, just as current owners Charlene Reiss and Mark Hazelrigg were searching for a place to buy in town. The Gamble House sat forlorn and unoccupied by then, with years of deferred maintenance piling up and intimidating potential buyers. Charlene and Mark fell in love with the house and purchased it in 2012. Thus began a renovation process aimed at critical damage-control while changing as little as possible. The result is a highly sensitive rehabilitation that preserves most elements of the original floor plan and delightful original fixtures that most homeowners today would have quickly let go. Kitchens and baths, for instance, typically see the most drastic modernizations, but Charlene and Mark resisted this trend. In the kitchen, you will still find the home’s under-cupboard flour dispensers, and in its bathroom, hot pink or jet-black sink and tub sets. The room arrangement of the Gamble House defined its modernity, and its retention of this pattern is important to our understanding the evolution of domestic life in this era. For their unequivocal dedication to authenticity in preserving a significant Durham landmark, our first George and Mary Pyne Award goes to Charlene and Mark.
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2002 W Club Blvd
Owners: Joseph Blocher and Marin Levy
Architect: Ron Wilde
Contractor: Munro Parker
This year, the renovation of 2002 West Club Boulevard knocked our socks off in its high-quality updates with strong attention to original details. Munro-Parker Development, consisting of Jay Munro and David Parker of Riverbank Construction, took a prominent house in the community (home to only three families in its 95 years) and polished it up again. This large Colonial Revival home was originally the residence of Miss Lottie Eure, a fixture at Watts Hospital for more than fifty years. Miss Eure’s family took nursing students into the home as boarders and kept it full for months at a time. Only in recent years did it stand empty—and this is when Jay and David stepped in. At first encounter, the new owners found that the home’s original windows and porch railing had been removed and its systems were failing; it was also hard to look past the dated shag carpeting, painted tile, and abundance of wallpaper. Fortunately, they recognized the home’s potential. Making only minor adjustments to the floor plan, they maintained original layout, function, and views. Wood trim was retained and restored, including a dropped picture molding throughout the first floor and seven original fireplaces. Wooden windows were reinstalled, and, of course, the kitchen and bathrooms were completely updated. They also found new owners, Joseph Blocher and Marin Levy, who are particularly appreciative because they have their own family connection to Watts Hospital. Blocher and Levy are already filling the house , as their first child was born just this summer. For their strong commitment to high-quality updating and widespread maintenance of original detail, we are very pleased to present to Jay Munro and David Parker a George and Mary Pyne Preservation Award.
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1809 Bivins Street
Owners: Miles and Catherine Honeycutt
Contractor: Longleaf Building and Restoration
There’s nothing like a real estate description that reads: “Sold as-is, needs work.” This is the way the Lonnie Jenkins House in the Lakewood-Tuscaloosa neighborhood was promoted. Owned originally by a carpenter, the home has come full circle with its owner Miles Honeycutt, himself a carpenter and contractor. Miles’s company, Longleaf Construction, has an excellent track record when it comes to historic properties. Specializing in fixing up what others say is too far gone, Miles has won preservation awards twice already for houses remodeled and sold to new families. It was high time that Miles fixed one up for himself. Indeed, with a full restoration of the original 1927 bungalow, including repaired windows, glowing hardwood floors, new systems, and a clever treatment to finish the original interior board walls, it is again a family home. Stretching the center hallway just a little bit, the house now connects to a rear addition with carefully matched siding and windows on the outside, and a more spacious kitchen, screened porch, and bright master suite inside. Meanwhile, a few thoughtful details, including a darling nook for a kid’s bed, make the whole place charming and comfortable. Once again, we are pleased to award a George and Mary Pyne Preservation Award to Miles Honeycutt—this time for his thoughtful restoration of 1809 Bivins Street. Congratulations on your new home!
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1011 Gloria Avenue
Owners: Kevin and Darlene Davis
Contractor: Deanna Crossman
Interior Design: Nicole Baxter
Built in the 1920’s for Duke University mathematics professor W.W. Rankin, this colonial revival, two-story brick house in the Trinity Park neighborhood is a classical gem that had seen better days when Kevin and Darlene Davis purchased it in 2010. It had previously been owned by Virginia Weldon, a retired school teacher for Northern High School who passed away in 2005. The house had been in the Weldon family since the 1950s. The property was marketed for sale by Preservation Durham as part of its Endangered Properties program and restrictive covenants, protecting the structure and specific interior features were placed upon the property in perpetuity. The house required significant restoration and upfit to again become a livable dwelling. Renovation veterans, having previously renovated a 1935-era house on nearby N. Duke Street, Kevin and Darlene were not deterred by the house’s condition, nor the protective covenants, which required consultation with and approval by Preservation Durham for all renovation work. The Davis’ renovation work was extensive, as the property had not been maintained in years. In addition to sensitive updates to the interior. They restored the side port cochere to a usable space, and added a new garage with in -aw unit to the rear of the property For their strong commitment to working with Preservation Durham and our protective covenant program, we are very pleased to present to Kevin and Darlene Davis a George and Mary Pyne Preservation Award.
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Maureen Joy Charter School, 107 S. Driver St.
Owners: Maureen Joy Charter School, Self-Help Credit Union
Architect: Belk Architecture
Contractor: CT Wilson Construction
Built in 1909, this impressive, two-story brick structure was designated a Local Historic Landmark in 2012 for its significance as Durham’s oldest and most architecturally-intact school building. The school was expanded in the 1920s, with two classroom wings added at the rear, serving East Durham’s community until 1967. The building was used briefly as a school for disabled students, and was then closed and shuttered completely. Developers created multiple plans for its proposed re-use over the years, but none came to fruition, and the building sat unused and deteriorating for four decades. Then, in 2010, Self-Help put forth a proposal to renovate the building as a school, keeping its neoclassical symmetrical layout and protecting numerous early 20-century architectural features. Self-Help’s development team installed new entrances in the original brick openings based on historical photographs. Meanwhile, wood flooring was salvaged and consolidated in the hallways, auditorium, and upper-level classrooms, and wainscoting and wooden stair railings were restored in the octagonal first-floor lobby. The renovation of the East Durham Graded School has created a new home for the students of the Maureen Joy Charter School while breathing life into the East Durham community and preserving this significant part of Durham’s heritage. For these reasons, we present Self-Help with a 2013 George and Mary Pyne Preservation Award.
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The Cookery, 1101 W. Chapel Hill St.
Owners: Nick Hawthorne-Johnson and Rochelle Johnson
Architect: Center Studio Architecture
Contractor: Nick Hawthorne-Johnson
Designers: Nick Hawthorne-Johnson, Rochelle Johnson, Dane Thompson
The modest brick building at the corner of West Chapel Hill Street and Carroll Street has been a hub of community activity for nearly a decade. Built between 1920 and 1923, it started its life as a neighborhood A&P grocery store. In the 1940s it was a dry cleaners and lunch counter; in the 1970s it housed the Sallam Cultural Center, a vibrant jazz club; and then finally the Durham Food Co-Op, which closed in 2008. Once the building was up for sale, Nick Hawthorne-Johnson saw through the years of bare-bones maintenance and impromtu fixes. Realizing how pivotal this building is for the commercial blocks of W Chapel Hill Street, an area that serves the diverse West End and Morehead Hill neighborhoods, he immediately knew he wanted to buy the space. Hawthorne-Johnson, a licensed contractor and co-owner of Bull City Restoration with his mother, Hettie Johnson, already knew the neighborhood well, having bought and renovated residential 14 properties nearby. After identifying a need for commercial kitchen access for food entrepreneurs in Durham, Hawthorne-Johnson brought his wife, Rochelle, an artist turned entrepreneur, into the development. Together, they rehabilitated and transformed the building into a commercial kitchen and a beautiful event space. The Front Room utilizes salvaged materials from historic Durham buildings to create a space that evokes Durham’s history. The pair have also kept and expanded the murals that distinguish the otherwise architecturally plain building, including the colorful Pauli Murray mural, the Durham Food Co-Op mural and a Pepsi-Cola advertisement uncovered during the renovation. While the Cookery is a clear success, having launched many new Durham food businesses and providing much-sought after event space, the renovation is also a lynchpin for the revitalization of the West Chapel Hill Street corridor. A new grocery store and restaurant have opened across the street, and Self-Help is currently planning a large commercial development adjacent to the Cookery, which will house, among other things, a co-operative grocery store. Not only has the Cookery established itself as an important feature in Durham’s emerging culinary identity, but it ensures this community landmark will continue to play a role in Durham’s success.
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Habitat for Humanity, for their work in East Durham
Recognized worldwide for their community-building efforts, Habitat for Humanity is making its mark in some of Durham’s most neglected historic neighborhoods. The organization is already well known for its ability to erect a new house from scratch in a matter of days. Leveraging the sweat equity of the home’s future owners and the strong spirit of community volunteerism, Habitat produces nearly 20 homes each year for Durham residents. More recently, Habitat has turned to East Durham’s historic neighborhoods with the goal of resurrecting abandoned and foreclosed housing falling to ruin. Like all of its properties, Habitat makes these thoroughly renovated homes available to low-income individuals and families, promoting homeownership as a tool for wealth-building and sustainable living. Habitat began its East Durham home renovations in 2011, recognizing the opportunity to strengthen already-existing communities. Preservation Durham is recognizing Durham Habitat for Humanity with a 2013 Neighborhood Conservation Award for its thoughtful renovations of these homes on N. Maple Street and N. Hyde Park Avenue, especially for the great care taken to external appearance. These formerly vacant homes have transformed from dull, derelict detractions into bright, colorful, and habitable homes that welcome the views of passersby. Moreover, these homes stand as shining examples that quality preservation is possible, even in communities with limited financial resources. We hope that Habitat’s work encourages others to follow suit in sensitively restoring neglected structures while promoting economic diversity in Durham’s historic neighborhoods.
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Five Points Building, 101-109 East Chapel Hill Street
Owners: Center Studio Architecture, The Cupcake Bar, Bullseye Bicycle, Pizzeria Toro, David Scarborough, Erin and Todd Mosier, Dale and Jean Mosier
Architect: Center Studio Architecture
Contractor: Lee Street Contractors
For years, this once-grand Second Empire building sat largely empty, its slate mansard roof and dormers lost, its fine brick detailing and arched doorways hacked away or hidden behind a layer of crumbling stucco. A Rube Goldberg system of tarps, buckets, and PVC pipes funneled water from the failing roof out a second-story window. The building had anchored the northeast corner of Durham’s Five Points intersection for more than a century, surviving devastating fires and somehow dodging the wrecking ball that had swept away many of its neighbors. Without rapid intervention, it would not outlast the onset of water damage and decay. Unable to keep up with the maintenance, the City sought redevelopment proposals for this building and the one adjacent. From their studio across the intersection, architects Scott Harmon and David Arneson struggled to find a way to save the two historic buildings, crafting an innovative strategy to restore them to their mid-20th century appearance, divide them into commercial condominiums, and populate them with like-minded entrepreneurs and residents willing to take on the costs of renovating their own spaces. Their proposal was accepted by the City, and stabilization and restoration began. Both buildings were gutted, their wood frames repaired and reinforced, metal casement windows refurbished and reglazed, storefront openings and arched doorways restored, and all mechanical systems were completely replaced. Wherever possible, original materials were repaired or refurbished and incorporated into the finished work. In addition, massive timbers were culled from failing floor and roof structures, milled, and repurposed as tables, benches, and furnishings. The results speak for themselves. For finding a way to revive this long-neglected but critically important corner of their downtown neighborhood, we are proud to award Center Studio Architects and Lee Street Construction a 2013 Neighborhood Conservation Award.
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1506 Hermitage Court Garage
Owners: Kevin and Julie Witte
Contractor: Stephen McDevitt
Built around 1930, the first owner of the Hugh E. White House was an office manager at the Liggett and Myers Tobacco Company. Today’s owners, Julie and Kevin Witte, have lived in the house for fifteen years and continue to care for this imposing Colonial Revival gem in the Forest Hills Historic District. The house itself has been well cared for over the years. Sited in the side yard, however, its garage had seen better days. The sill was rotting, the roof gaping open, and everyone the Wittes approached to repair it recommended they simply tear it down and build a storage shed. But the Wittes stood their ground and repaired it, first hoisting it up on piers to replace the sill and concrete floor. By the time they were finished, the Wittes had given the structure a heavy treatment, reinforcing failing studs, repairing disintegrating weatherboard, replacing failing windows, and patching large holes in the roof. Today, this garage is ready for another 80 years of use. But what is important about preserving a garage? These small buildings are important historic features of neighborhoods like Forest Hills, once a commuter suburb. Long ago, they housed the cars that allowed residents to escape the congestion and—some felt—contagion of downtown. A car brought residents to where the air was clear and the yards were big. The Wittes’ pride in their historic garage is a wonderful reminder of the importance of preserving not only the most obvious features in a neighborhood landscape, but also significant complementary features that are often overlooked. For their uniquely comprehensive perspective on residential property preservation and our hope that this sets an example for future home renovators, we honor Julie and Kevin Witte with a Neighborhood Conservation Award.
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[tab title=”People’s Choice Award”]
Developer: Bob Chapman
Designer: David Solow
Owners: Leon Grodski de Barrera and Areli Barrera de Grodski
Our inaugural People’s Choice Award for their favorite adaptive reuse project in Durham goes to Cocoa Cinnamon.
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[tab title=”Preservation Advocacy Award”] John Martin
401 E Trinity Avenue
The Preservation Durham Advocacy Award recognizes preservation advocacy efforts that are not necessarily tied to a specific bricks-and-mortar project. The award is given to individuals or groups who have contributed to the public discussion of Durham’s architecture and history, have lobbied for effective preservation policies, or have otherwise championed the recognition and retention of Durham’s historic resources. Our 2013 Advocacy Award goes to John Martin. The house you see here is one of several that John has guided through extensive rehabilitation. He has already received two Neighborhood Conservation Awards over the past few years. In 2009, he saved the Hobgood-Tate house from demolition and moved it to 1001 Edith St. In 2011, John rehabilitated a Craftsman bungalow in the Golden Belt neighborhood. Most recently, John fully rehabilitated an old Tudor-style home at 401 East Trinity Avenue in Old North Durham, the results of which you are seeing here. John’s advocacy work is highly admirable. Formerly, as president of InterNeighborhood Council, or INC, an organization combining community advocacy efforts across several historic neighborhoods in Durham, John pushed the city to support the planning department’s capacity to complete local historic district applications in a timely manner. While residing in the Golden Belt neighborhood, John was a driving force in the application for local historic district status. John is regularly seen at any City Council meeting for which a preservation issue is on the docket. John is a retired history professor at Durham Tech Community College, and we know that he will continue to help save Durham’s history in the passionate, earnest, and meticulous way that a history professor would. On behalf of Durham and all who are moved by John’s contributions to Durham’s historical revival, we are pleased to honor John with our 2013 Advocacy Award.
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