Update – Contemporary Design in Historic Districts……..

I posted this awhile back and I am bringing it forward to add an update………….

Last week a judge ruled on the controversial case of a modern house in the historic Raleigh, NC neighborhood of Oakwood.

Read the judges decision in the News & Observer .


Photo – courtesy of the News & Observer

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“…The evolution of architecture hasn’t ended, and that’s why preservation professionals strongly support integrating “modern” design into historic districts………the richness of the layers will continue to appreciate as our own generation adds to the mix while respecting what went before.” Myrick Howard

602822_546080445427964_466147288_nContemporary home in Laurel Park

Here is a great article by a well regarded preservation professional as to why modern architecture is both welcome and “fits” in our historic districts: Oakwood controversy over ‘contemporary’ house disturbing on many levels

“Raleigh’s historic districts were built over a period of decades – house-by-house, owner-by-owner. Unlike modern subdivisions, they contain numerous styles and sizes, and it is this richness that gives them their character. They are mosaics, made up of many distinctive parts. No one style predominates, so it makes no sense whatsoever to prescribe stylistic limitations.” Myrick Howard


Raleigh’s Oakwood Historic District has the distinction of being both a National Register District and a locally designated district.  Laurel Park is only  a National Register District.  The districts are similar in that they have no one year of significance or style of architecture.  Development of the Laurel Park neighborhood began at the turn of the twentieth century, flourished in the 1920’s and experienced another “growth spurt” in the 40’s and early 50’s.   The district is generally associated with events that were important to the early development of Sarasota from 1920-1957.  The architectural styles are all over the place.

The lack of understanding of historic preservation has led some Laurel Park residents to believe that replicating the architectural style, maintaining a vintage, historic appearance is necessary to the preservation of a district.  This tells me that preservation professionals and advocates need to do a better job of educating our community.  Some of Laurel Park’s best new homes are those that define this decade in time by introducing architectural diversity into the fabric of the neighborhood.

1723 Oak StreetLaurel Park – New construction in a flood zone


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