The Historic Landmark Fee heard a proposal final month to demolish an outdated constructing and assemble a brand new one on a property situated within the West Line Historic District, which was added to the Nationwide Register of Historic Locations in 2005.
The constructing in query, at 1007 Maufrais St., can be a contributing constructing, which means its presence has been deemed vital to the historic character of the district.
Based on metropolis staffers, the current building is a single-story home with a metallic roof that was first constructed in 1941. The brand new constructing can be two tales excessive and would have a extra contemporary design.
In committee suggestions in January, it was prompt that as a substitute of a full demolition and rebuild, the owners would possibly change the porch and home windows and add a second ground, “to reduce the affect of the proposed modifications on the contributing home.”
However in the end staffers really helpful the discharge of a demolition allow after the completion of a metropolis documentation package deal – a file of images and schematics and a story historical past of the constructing for the Austin Historical past Middle.
On the March 22 assembly, the challenge’s lead architect, Andrew Logan, stated that the present homeowners bought the property final fall and that beginning out, their major objective was to “enhance avenue connectivity.” However as redesign discussions unfolded, it made extra sense to demolish the property and rebuild it with the household’s targets in thoughts.
One of many property homeowners, Justin Thomas, additionally confirmed as much as communicate on the proposal, saying that the proposed new house is the “dream residence” he and his spouse need to construct for his or her household.
The challenge has obtained some pushback.
In a citizen remark, Janice Burckhardt said, “The extra properties demolished within the space, the extra precarious the Nationwide Historic District designation, which is of worth not solely to residents of (Outdated West Austin) however to all of Austin.”
Kalan Contreras, staffer with the Historic Preservation Workplace, advised the fee that one of many issues of the Architectural Evaluation Committee was the “visible affect” a second-floor dormer would have on the neighborhood if the brand new constructing plans had been permitted.
Commissioner Ben Heimsath weighed in with an analogous sentiment, saying that the fee has heard from neighbors, “who had among the identical issues because the Architectural Evaluation Committee.”
From there, Commissioner Kevin Koch motioned to push again a choice till the April 26 assembly. Koch initially stated he was keen to maneuver ahead with the plan’s proposal, however modified his thoughts when he remembered the constructing is in a Nationwide Register district.
Based on Koch, “The feedback are so intensive on the massing, the fenestration, the roof kind, the supplies … the brand new building is completely incompatible and the unique residence actually has a lot going for it.”
The feedback had been well-received by the commissions, as they appeared to share comparable issues about preserving the historic standing of the house and needed to permit extra time to discover different design choices for the property.
Voting 9-1, with Commissioner Witt Featherston opposed, the fee agreed to postpone a choice till subsequent month’s assembly.
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