Sep 052011
 

417 Henry Clay Avenue (photo by Preservation Resource Center)

A large historic home on Henry Clay Avenue and a mansion on St. Charles Avenue are being considered for demolition, according to the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting of the Neighborhood Conservation District Committee.

The owners of 417 Henry Clay Avenue say their renovated historic home has become too difficult to maintain, but they want to remain in the same location, according to a letter to neighbors included in their application to the NCDC and published by the Preservation Resource Center. Their proposed solution is to demolish the renovated house and replace it with a new house of contemporary design that will be easier to maintain, the letter states.

The mansion at 5428 St. Charles Avenue is also planned to be replaced with a home of new construction, according to documents published by the PRC. That fate of that property was the subject of a skirmish between its owners and preservationists four years ago, according to Karen Gadbois of The Lens.

The NCDC meets at 2 p.m. Tuesday in the City Council chambers at City Hall, 1300 Perdido Street.

5428 St. Charles Avenue (photo by Preservation Resource Center)

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  • Michelle

    The owner of the St Charles Avenue house will likely ask for NCDC to defer on the demolition proposal so he can continue to meet with concerned organizations. The structure was designed by Emile Weil, who designed several other houses on the Avenue, Touro Synagogue, Whitney downtown and on Carrollton, an addition to Dixie Brewery and the Saenger Theater.

  • Jeri Ann Flynn

    I absolutely don’t approve of demolishing these homes. Lovely Baton Rouge neighborhoods are being decimated (in my opinion) when older homes are demolished and tacky, tacky, tacky houses replace them. (a Baton Rouge resident)

  • Brian Hess

    I think that those people should move. It would be more cost effective for them to build on a new site than to take away a piece of history. Too many people here in Washington State have torn beautiful old buildings down and replaced them with stale houses that will not even last as long. Construction methods of newer homes really don’t make them that much easier to maintain. The older a home is the better quality it is. Renovations that have been done to the home already? There really is no common sense. I think that they need to be educated on the importance of preservation of historic sites as so many have been lost due to other disasters cause by both nature and man. What a shame if they cities approve their permits.

  • Owen Courreges

    Neither of these buildings are even vaguely viable candidates for demolition. I’m especially puzzled by the Henry Clay house — it appears to be in reasonably good condition, and the materials used in historic homes actually fare much better over time than modern construction. My house had a great deal of deferred maintainence when I moved in, and virtually all of the wood I’ve replaced is not original to the house. That’s because modern woods rot much more easily and tend to be more attractive to termites.

    I also have difficulty believing that a “contemporary” design will work on Henry Clay. Besides, couldn’t they find an empty lot? There are a number of empty lots throughout Uptown. They could probably sell their current home for a hefty sum and actually save money by building elsewhere.

    I hate to impose my personal perferences on others, but I simply don’t understand the desire to demolish this particular property.

  • Uptowner

    This is crazy! Both of these homes are historic gems. There should be an investigation if either of these are approved for demolition, as there must be something else up for the NCDC to approve them.

    If they don’t like how they are, they can sell them to other people and buy more contemporary ones. But demolishing these would be a crime.

  • JEFFREY

    DEMOLITION NO!

  • Su

    DO not allow these houses to be destroyed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sell them and move you clearly arent wanted in an area of historic homes if you have the nerve to ask to destroy them,

  • Sherri Hutton

    If they want something contemporary they should move to Metairie.

  • Maggie Edwards

    I say sell the property to someone WHO LOVES N.O. cause they just don’t

  • Nola

    What did I read at one time? 85% of renovation expences benifit local businesses where as 85% of new construction costs benifit out of state national or international companies. Both houses look beautiful to me. I can’t see the new plans so I don’t see the point of this discussion.

  • Kristine Froeba

    This house was raised by someone with no sense of proportion or knowledge of New Orleans architecture.

    It would be best served, if sold to someone who would lower it to it’s original height.

    I lived a block form this house as a child and it was perfect then and now, except that it was raised and surrounded by an ugly fence.

  • Emily

    The house on St. Charles is owned by someone who lives in a modern 1 story brick house which is also on St. Charles, just a few blocks on the other side of Jefferson Avenue. Why don’t they tear down that house and build another modern house there?

    Well, the wonderful house in the 5200 block is a much bigger lot.

    Also,The owners also want to increase the density, that is, they want to exceed the number of units to more than two. The neighborhood is zoned 2 family but they want to increase their profit by making it more.

    Taste is personal but analyzing at the house the owners currently occupy – I would describe it as Metairie modern- I am not optimistic re their design choices.

    Nothing personal here- but we enacted Zoning Laws so that neighborhoods could retain their character and panache. Having a low “hi-rise” would make this part of St. Charles begin to resemble the disaster that occurred on St. Charles past Louisiana (down river) where “new ” construction and apartment buildings have made that part of St. Charles unappealing.