A blighted historic home in Southeast Raleigh narrowly escaped the wrecking ball: it’s under contract and the soon-to-be owner is already making repairs.
Preservation North Carolina – the nonprofit that’s helping save the Villa Florenza house on Poole Road – on Tuesday persuaded the Raleigh City Council to hold off on demolitions for at least four more months. That’s how long the sale process is expected to take.
“It is a great historic residence that I would hate to lose,” Mayor Nancy McFarlane said.
Jason Queen of Preservation North Carolina said the buyer has already made roof repairs and installed a security fence around the back of the house; he’ll spend another $50,000 on repairs after the sale is finalized. The buyer hopes to restore the building as an office building within two years, Queen said.
When William A. Curtis built the house in 1915, the Lincoln Park neighborhood between New Bern Avenue and what’s now Poole Road served as a border between white and black sections of Raleigh at the height of the Jim Crow era.
Curtis drove a delivery wagon, sold produce at City Market and worked at a Blount Street laundry – enough to become relatively wealthy for a black man in the early 20th century. The home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Here's a link to our original article from December: http://www.northraleighnews.com/2012/12/11/21340/historic-southeast-raleigh-house.html