PROJECTS COMMITTEE MEETING
April 7, 2003
Location: 2100 Randolph Road, Charlotte, NC
Time: 6:00 p.m. - 8:10 p.m.
John Parker, Committee Chairman
Tattie Bos, Committee Vice-Chairman
John Misenheimer, HLC Vice-Chairman
Dan Morrill, HLC Consulting Director
Bryan Turner, HLC Projects Manager
Mary Lynn Morrill, HLC Recording Consultant
Bob Silverman, Winter Properties (Highland Mill)
David Burt, Winter Properties (Highland Miller)
Ellen Rogers, Bank of America (Highland Mill)
Paul McBroom, NODA neighborhood representative (Highland Mill)
Miller Jordan, Charlotte Trolley
David Murdock, Copeland Architects (Grier House)
Mr. Parker welcomed everyone to the meeting. The next Projects Committee
meeting is scheduled for May 5, 2003, at 6:00 p.m.
1. Consulting Director’s Report: Dr. Morrill reported that a contract
has been signed for the sale of the Croft Schoolhouse.
2. Trolley Barn Update: Dr. Morrill reported that on April 15, 2003,
the Board of County Commissioners will reconsider purchasing the building
for the trolleys.
3. Streetcar #85: Dr. Morrill explained the details of the situation
to the committee. Mr. Miller Jordan, Chairman of the Board of Charlotte
Trolley, Inc., said that his board continues to negotiate with CATS. He said
the board is committed to vintage trolley service. Dr. Morrill said that the
HLC voted at its March meeting to sell Streetcar #85 to Charlotte Trolley
contingent upon the HLC’s approving an acceptable contract which will be
prepared by Attorney Patricia Nystrom for the proposed sale. The contract
will be presented for consideration at the HLC’s meeting on April 14. The
Committee agreed that the contract will be presented to the HLC at its April
14th meeting and that Dr. Morrill would report on whether CATS wishes that
Streetcar#85 be placed in CATS’S ownership if CATS spends the money to
restore the car for regular service in the vintage trolley fleet.
4. Highland Mill #3: Dr. Morrill briefly told the Committee members
about the history of the building. Mr. Silverman presented a slide program
on properties that Winter Properties has restored and told about the
proposed plans for Highland Mill, all of which will be subject to design
review by the HLC once restoration begins. He said that $1.5 million dollars
is needed in the form of a three year loan from the HLC’s revolving fund to
help finance the restoration of the Highland Mill. Ms. Rogers said that Bank
of America is financing the bulk of the project but that assistance from the
HLC is needed due to negative changes in the economy during the past couple
of years. Mr. McBroom said that the mill is very important to the
neighborhood and that the North Charlotte neighborhood has more 100-year-old
houses than any other local neighborhood. Mr. Turner reported that the HLC
currently has $2.272 million in its fund for use but that a good bit of the
money is obligated. He distributed an chart showing outstanding payments and
estimated project costs.
MR. KLUTTZ PRESENTED A MOTION SECONDED BY MR. MISENHEIMER TO RECOMMEND TO
THE HISTORIC LANDMARKS COMMISSION THAT DR. MORRILL AND ATTORNEY PATRICIA
NYSTROM INVESTIGATE THE FEASIBILITY OF THE HLC’S POSSIBLE FINANCIAL
INVOLVEMENT IN THE HIGHLAND MILL #3 PROJECT AND TO MAKE A RECOMMENDATION TO
THE PROJECTS COMMITTEE AT ITS MAY MEETING. THE COMMITTEE APPROVED THE MOTION
AS FOLLOWS: ABSTAIN: MS. JOHNSON-GESS, MR. NORMAN (BOTH RECUSED
THEMSELVES FROM THE VOTE) OPPOSE: NONE FAVOR: MR. PARKER, MS.
BOS, MS. COX, MR. GEER, JR. KLUTTZ, MS. LEWIS, MR. MISENHEIMER.
5. Grier House: Mr. Turner reported that the
restoration/stabilization should be completed by late September when
Portrait Homes expects to have the grand opening for the adjoining townhouse
project. Three proposed design plans were shown by Mr. Murdock for the 2,641
square feet structure for the committee to consider in regard to what is
MR. GEER PRESENTED A MOTION SECONDED BY MR. NORMAN TO RECOMMEND TO THE
HISTORIC LANDMARKS COMMISSION THAT PROPOSED DESIGN PLANS #1 AND #2 FOR THE
GRIER HOUSE BE PURSUED. THE COMMITTEE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE MOTION.
6. Potential New Projects: Dr. Morrill presented a list of
projects that the HLC might want to consider as real estate projects in the
relatively near future. The list is derived from the various surveys of
historic resources that the HLC has conducted over the years. Two
consideration have been uppermost in elevating these properties to the
highest level of consideration. They are: 1) level of endangerment and 2)
feasibility and availability. This is the list:
a. Highland Park Manufacturing Plant No. 3 (The most
imposing collection of historic textile building in Mecklenburg County. The
developer proposes that the HLC provide a loan of $1.5 million to allow the
project to move forward.)
b. Ewart House, Huntersville-Concord Road (A distinctive "Triple
A" house with distinctive Victorian ornamentation. Staff believes that the
property is available for sale.)
c. Fincher Farmhouse, McKee Road ( Staff believes that this
property is scheduled for development. It is an important remnant of
Mecklenburg’s rural heritage - much like the Washam Farm.)
d. Reverend Pharr House, Prosperity Church Road (This property is
for sale. The price is unknown. The house was the home of a Presbyterian
minister and dates from the mid 1800s. This would be a project much like the
W. T. Alexander Plantation, meaning that economic viability would depend
upon infill development.)
e. Ada Manufacturing Co., 12th Street (This is the best preserved
remnant of a pre-1890s textile mill in Charlotte. Development of the
property would be a challenge, but the building is highly endangered. Staff
does not know whether the building is available for purchase.)
f. Newell Rosenwald School, Torrence Grove Church Road (This is
among the best preserved Rosenwald Schools in Mecklenburg County. The HLC
has considered this property previously. This would be a project similar to
the Davis House. The HLC would obtain the property and sell it back to the
present owners. This would be a complicated project to accomplish.)
g. John Murray Alexander Farmhouse, Glory Street (This building
and approximately 9 acres of land are available for $350,000. This is a well
preserved example of an in-tact small African American farm. The HLC can
move ahead with this project.)
h. Bathesda School, Alexanderana Road (This building and
approximately 2 acres of land are available for $125,000. The Bathesda
School is the oldest extant school building used by African American
students. The HLC can move ahead with the project.)
i. Dr. Richard Z. Query House, Steele Creek Road (Staff believes
that the City has acquired this house in order to make way for a new runway.
The house will probably have to be moved to a new site. It is an important
part of Mecklenburg County’s rural heritage.)
j. Frank Lytle House, Huntersville-Concord Road (This is the most
substantial home built by an African American farmer in Mecklenburg County
in the early 1900s. The house is threatened because of impending development
of the property.)
Staff Recommendation: Staff recommends that the HLC move ahead
with the purchase of the Bathesda School and determine the economic
feasibility of purchasing the John Murray Alexander House, the Reverend
Pharr House, and the economic and legal feasibility of participating in the
Highland Mill project. Investigation of the availability of the Fincher
Farmhouse, the Frank Lytle House, the Dr. Richard Z. Query House, and the
Ewart House should be undertaken. The Ada Manufacturing Company and the
Newell Rosenwald School should not be pursued at this time.
The Committee agreed that the HLC should wait on purchasing the Bathesda
7. Updates: Mr. Turner
A. Grand Theater - Due diligence procedures are underway.
B. Croft Schoolhouse - A purchase offer has been accepted by the
C. Yandell House, Main St., Pineville, N. C. - The Executive
Committee of the HLC has submitted a contingency contract that the HLC
purchase the house for $520,000. The HLC’s contract has been accepted. The
Committee stipulated than an appraisal should be part of the due diligence
MR. MISENHEIMER PRESENTED A MOTION SECONDED BY MR. PARKER TO RECOMMEND TO
THE HISTORIC LANDMARKS COMMISSION THAT THE HLC PURCHASE THE YANDELL HOUSE ON
MAIN STREET IN PINEVILLE, N. C. SUBJECT TO DUE DILIGENCE AND APPRAISAL AND
APPROVAL BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS. THE COMMITTEE UNANIMOUSLY
APPROVED THE MOTION.
D. W. T. Alexander - Exterior restoration is nearing completion.
Underground fuel oil tanks have been removed and contaminated soils abated.
RFP to developers has been sent to a limited list of potential interested
parties. MECA Properties is assisting with the expansion of the distribution
E. Grier-Rea House - Foundation construction is complete. The
house has been moved to its final location. Construction documents for the
repair of the lower level floor system, foundation, walls and internal piers
are in the hands of contractors for bidding. Bids will be received on April
10, 2003 with work commencing shortly thereafter. Mr. Stewart Gray is
preparing National Registry documentation.
8. Report of Funds Analysis Subcommittee: Ms. Bos
Ms. Bos, Mr. Norman, Dr. Morrill and Mr. Turner will meet soon and
further analyze all aspects of the funds.
Dr. Morrill reported that the future of the four old buildings in the 400
block of E. Trade Street continues to be threatened by the new Arena which
will be built there. The HLC awaits an evaluation by the City regarding
moving costs, etc.
10. New Business.
There was no new business.
The meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.