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Old 07-17-2014, 07:21 PM
 
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Anyone know why this building in Grafton Hill was demolished?

601 W. Riverview Avenue, Dayton, OH, 45406 - Office Building Property on LoopNet.com

It, at least from the outside, was a beautiful building. Looked to be in good shape, occupied by Premier Health for a while before they purchased their current building. And it had a wonderful view of the river from its hill. Right across from the Art Institute. What's going on?
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Old 07-17-2014, 08:36 PM
 
Location: Five Oaks
430 posts, read 450,685 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OHKID View Post
Anyone know why this building in Grafton Hill was demolished?

601 W. Riverview Avenue, Dayton, OH, 45406 - Office Building Property on LoopNet.com

It, at least from the outside, was a beautiful building. Looked to be in good shape, occupied by Premier Health for a while before they purchased their current building. And it had a wonderful view of the river from its hill. Right across from the Art Institute. What's going on?
I think someone wants to build condos there, from what I've heard at FROC.
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Old 07-17-2014, 08:48 PM
 
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I didn't even know it was. Hopefully something good is built there, because I liked that building.
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:54 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Amandarthegreat View Post
I think someone wants to build condos there, from what I've heard at FROC.
Ah cool. Thank you!

Makes sense, that view is killer. I will miss the design of the former building, it was built in one of my favorite styles (minimalist mid-century modern) with a good helping of my favorite material (limestone).

If anyone out there watches the original Get Smart, the building was definitely a throwback to that era.
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Old 07-27-2014, 01:57 PM
 
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In memory of 601 W Riverview Ave

Taking a closer look at our region

(Good DDN article from an architect on why the building was his favorite in the area)
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Old 07-27-2014, 04:27 PM
 
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I remember that article. I still can't believe they got rid of the builiding.
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Old 07-29-2014, 06:42 PM
 
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Rather than start a new thread, I decided to field this question in here.

I have seen the result of demolishing a bunch of old houses where a few are left standing on a block and wondered if it would make sense to move the survivors around?

For instance, if a block used to contain 2 rows of 10 houses and 10 of the 20 total houses were demolished, how much trouble would it be to subdivide the vacant lots into two parts and add those to lots that still contained a house ( or "bonus" one lot into the one still with a house)?

The end result would be 10 houses on that same block with 10 lots that were twice the size of the original lots. Where a block had a bunch of houses bunched together, actual physical moving would have to happen in order to space the houses out so that every other former lot held a house.

Sometimes, a house would have to be moved across a street or so.

It might be realistic to "give" a house 2 entire extra lots. Sometimes the math might work out to only four houses left on a block and another might have 16. That is when some would have to be moved. Sometimes, there might be a cluster of homes where the residents are all owners and don't want to be moved. In such a case, such mentality would tend to be helpful in building a new neighborhood. I don't see any reason to get too anal about spacing.

In time, with trees and people willing to stay or locate to a place with a large lot inside the city, these blocks would tend to look nice. I don't see much hope for a block with five or six continuous vacant lots next to five or six continuous old houses. Eventually, the remaining houses will also fall.

I know moving a house isn't free, but I don't see any hope for the survivors without doing something to make the partially-demolished blocks look decent.

A good example of what looks like crap is a lot of the area E of Miami Valley Hosp. where there is just a couple houses on a block that used to have many homes. The stuff that's left is going to be torn down. It's just a matter of time.

Last edited by IDtheftV; 07-29-2014 at 06:53 PM..
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Old 07-29-2014, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
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ID, you present a classic urban issue that pops up frequently in Midwestern cities. In some places such as Detroit or North St. Louis you end up with entire neighborhoods so decimated by city-ordered demolitions that the remaining isolated house or two look like farmhouses stuck in the middle of a rural area instead of lucky survivors of a once densely built neighborhood. I've studied with interest several areas in Dayton such as Riverdale and North Main where some of the survivors suggest a very prosperous area over a century ago but now present the gap-toothed appearance you described. There's a pocket of interesting old homes between north Main and Riverside Dr. (between Mary and East Helena) East Mumma is representative of the area and still has a contiguous housing stock as one goes east from North Main yet the trend of picking off houses one by one was established long ago. A few of the surviving houses along North Main were once grand (notably, the towered Victorian Queen Annes) but decades of hard rental and commercial use have left little but some exterior clues as to what they may have once been.

I speculate the day is not far off when everything I've mentioned is replaced by vacant lots. The City does have some incentives in place to buy and rehab some of the houses in the 5 Oaks neighborhood due west of North Main but it looks like the area east of it to the river is considered expendable. A shame really because if one could gather up the best survivors and place them together on generous size lots in the hands of owners who were obligated to rehab them to historic district standards, a revitalized and architectural diverse residential area could result. Less waste in the landfill and more tax revenue for the city than a vacant lot produces.
But its probably reasonable to assume nothing like that will ever happen. Moving houses is fairly expensive-typically $25,000 or more to move a single story house a few blocks, put it down on a new foundation, and pay for utility hookups. Then the house in question would need a fair amount of work-electrical, plumbing, HVAC as well as cosmetic work like exterior painting or interior millwork refinishing. (not to mention un-doing past remodeling mistakes or replacing missing architectural features) Once a house is going to be moved, it is in the crosshairs of the City's building department and would require all applicable permits-about the same number as a new build. In summary, thousands of great old homes in the predicament you describe are going to be lost in the coming years because saving them is cost prohibitive. Where the process of neighborhood erosion is not too advanced and the remaining housing stock is generally well cared for, some vacant lots can be converted to a neighborhood-community garden or small park. Homeowners may be able to buy city-owned post-demolition cleared lots right next to them for larger yards (a practice that is feasible and fairly common in old neighborhoods) Last, in some neighborhoods where property values are on the upswing vacant lots can have new infill housing built. In the best examples, the new infill housing is design compatible with the existing age and style of the old housing stock therefore enhancing the streetscape appearance. If one thinks about it the best compatible infill housing would be those houses needing to be saved from the wrecking ball still standing in the neighborhood but lacking a residential context due to their neighbors already being lost to demolition. But standing in the way of collecting these worthy survivors and rewarding them with a second life are the costs. In a city where older housing stock is sometimes priced very low, convincing anyone to invest in moving and renovating a period home which post-renovation may show minimal value appreciation, is futile. This is not a Dayton specific problem but one applicable to older neighborhoods in many American cities. I'm afraid by the time any real world solutions are devised to slow down or stop these losses, it will be a case of too little too late. Sadly, the problem you mention is all too familiar and usually follows a predicable path until a once vibrant neighborhood vanishes and only a distant memory or some old photographs remain. In a number of the Dayton threads I've read, the major questions are whether living in the city itself is a good idea or is living in the suburbs the best choice. Most folks would not even consider the concept of saving deteriorated old housing stock unless they could be called Preservationists-and there are not that many of us in the general population. In summary: it's a difficult problem with no easy solutions. Demolition is always the default solution-it shouldn't be.
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:24 PM
 
1,842 posts, read 1,390,070 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintrest View Post
... if one could gather up the best survivors and place them together on generous size lots in the hands of owners who were obligated to rehab them to historic district standards, ...
I think that for something like this to work, obligating owners to meet strict standards is a recipe for failure. We are talking about getting middle class families back into city homes, not lawyers and doctors and such.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintrest View Post
... But its probably reasonable to assume nothing like that will ever happen. Moving houses is fairly expensive-typically $25,000 or more to move a single story house a few blocks, put it down ...
For that reason, only houses with good bones should be moved. They don't have to be particularly historic.

I wonder if moving lots of houses would be so expensive. Much of the cost is possibly in the rental of equipment that is little used and has to have its costs recouped. If many dozen blocks of a neighborhood are going to be rehabbed like that and many dozens of houses moved, I wouldn't be surprised if the cost is much less. It's like when a new subdivision is put in these days, builders offer much better prices since the trades go from house-to-house wiring and plumbing and such.

Moving a house is usually such a special project. It's generally in an older area where wires have to be disconnected and reconnected.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintrest View Post
... Once a house is going to be moved, it is in the crosshairs of the City's building department ...
Here again, the city is going to have to figure out how to NOT be so strict about bringing 80-100-year-old structures up to code ( except for electrical, I guess ).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintrest View Post
... Demolition is always the default solution-it shouldn't be.
Yup. That's why I would suggest, at least, deconstruction first. I just can't believe that so much solid-oak or whatever else hardwood was used gets crunched up like it does.

I love that show Rehab Addict where the host Nicole Curtis is constantly re-using old floors that once sanded and polished look wonderful. ( She operates mostly out of Minneapolis, but once did a house in Detroit. )

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintrest View Post
I speculate the day is not far off when everything I've mentioned is replaced by vacant lots.
Worse, a new term will be born - vacant blocks or vacant neighborhoods. I guess a return to forest or farm is better than what's happening now.

All the above is just my speculation and opinions. I was curious if anyone else ever thought about this kind of thing. I have no real hope of it happening. This is just a mental exercise that I thought I'd throw out to the forum.

Last edited by IDtheftV; 07-29-2014 at 09:34 PM..
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Old 07-29-2014, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Five Oaks
430 posts, read 450,685 times
Reputation: 323
Quote:
Originally Posted by IDtheftV View Post
Rather than start a new thread, I decided to field this question in here.

I have seen the result of demolishing a bunch of old houses where a few are left standing on a block and wondered if it would make sense to move the survivors around?

For instance, if a block used to contain 2 rows of 10 houses and 10 of the 20 total houses were demolished, how much trouble would it be to subdivide the vacant lots into two parts and add those to lots that still contained a house ( or "bonus" one lot into the one still with a house)?

The end result would be 10 houses on that same block with 10 lots that were twice the size of the original lots. Where a block had a bunch of houses bunched together, actual physical moving would have to happen in order to space the houses out so that every other former lot held a house.

Sometimes, a house would have to be moved across a street or so.

It might be realistic to "give" a house 2 entire extra lots. Sometimes the math might work out to only four houses left on a block and another might have 16. That is when some would have to be moved. Sometimes, there might be a cluster of homes where the residents are all owners and don't want to be moved. In such a case, such mentality would tend to be helpful in building a new neighborhood. I don't see any reason to get too anal about spacing.

In time, with trees and people willing to stay or locate to a place with a large lot inside the city, these blocks would tend to look nice. I don't see much hope for a block with five or six continuous vacant lots next to five or six continuous old houses. Eventually, the remaining houses will also fall.
.
They do this already; it's called Lot Links: Lot Links

There's a few "urban estates" around the city.
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