Buncombe County Government was recently honored by The Preservation Society of Asheville & Buncombe County at the 2017 Griffin Awards for Historic Preservation.
In the Stewardship category, Buncombe County Government was recognized for the long-term care and maintenance of the Smith & Carrier Office building, currently housing the Register of Deeds Office at 205 College St. This building, built in 1923, stands in the shadow of both the new courts building and a modern office building at the College Street roundabout.
“Over the past 23 years, the County has gradually made significant repairs and breathed new life into the Carrier Building. The Buncombe County Register of Deeds is now the careful steward of this historic place and its history is celebrated in photography throughout. As history is made and recorded in deeds, the Carrier building today plays a role in preserving the story of Asheville and Buncombe County,” said Jack Thomson, Executive Director, Preservation Society of Asheville & Buncombe County.
In the Education category, The North Carolina Room of Pack Library was honored for their highly regarded program series highlighting Downtown Asheville in the 1980’s. The Farm Heritage Trail, a project from Buncombe County Soil & Water Conservation District’s Farmland Preservation Program was also honored in this category.
The Preservation Society of Asheville & Buncombe County is a 501c3 non-profit organization whose mission is to sustain the heritage and sense of place that is Asheville and Buncombe County through preservation and promotion of the unique historic resources of the region. The Griffin Awards pay tribute to the efforts of property owners, contractors and architects across our community that are the key stone to preservation, according to the PSABC website. Several awards were given. The category, Adaptive Reuse, recognizes efforts to sensitively alter historic places to allow for a new use. The Patton Parker House at 95 Charlotte Street, Buxton Hall Barbecue, the new 12 Bones in the River Arts District and the Swannonoa Valley Museum all received honors in this category.
Rehabilitation is the preservation practice of lightly modify a historic house in a manner that respects integrity of age while allowing for modern-day conveniences. 51 Starnes Avenue in Montford, 14 Club Street in Chicken Hill, 178 Sunset Drive in Black Mountain and 51 Lawrence Place of Grove Park were recognized as significant rehab projects for 2017.
The Albemarle Park Manor-Grounds Neighborhood Association was honored by PSABC for an outstanding body of work in replicating historic street lighting, restoring a brick-lined walkway known as Hillside Walk, the production of a new neighborhood website and the restoration of two stone gateway pillars to the historic district.
Restoration is the seldom used practice of accurately reviving a historic place to a certain period of time from the past. The Vance Monument and the Montreat Gateway were both recognized for exacting efforts in restoring these key historic resources of our community. Congratulations to all the winners.