I’ve posted before about the juxtaposition of old and new in Buckhead. It’s an area whose early 20th century historic fabric is ALMOST completely demolished and they’re fighting for more. The most recent uproar has been over the Randolph-Lucas house, one of the last grand homes on Peachtree that, when the property was bought for development in 1997, was suddenly in the way. Listed in the National Register in and designated as a Historic Building Exterior by the City of Atlanta in 1990, the 1924 Classical Revival home was moved to the front edge of the lot to make room for the condos, but it was preserved. However, the upkeep of the historic home was of secondary importance to the owners, now the condo association. So onerous in fact that they seem of the neglected anything but lawnmowing and tree removal until about a year ago they came to the city again requesting a demolition permit, saying the house was a liability and serious safety concern and NOW there was no way they could afford the full-scale rehabilitation that their failure to invest in maintenance previously has caused. boo hoo.
Buckhead Heritage and Buckhead residents among other preservationists started fighting for its salvation and just last week and solution was nailed down that involves bringing the Randolph-Lucas house to be almost a neighbor to Rhodes Hall. Moving a house is not ideal of course, and taking the home off Peachtree St where it’s historic context as one of the last remaining (possibly the last remaining) evidences of the migration up Peachtree toward Buckhead of Atlanta’s turn of the century elite. As a last resort, however, moving a structure preferable to demolishing it forever. In the future, this move will be part of the house’s story. re-established on a block in Ansley Park just behind the Museum of Design (which is across from the High), it will have a new life and hopefully new lives.
So, basically, the condo association has won, not easily, and not without grief, but also, the Randolph-Lucas house is no longer in foster care but has found its [hopefully] forever-home.