Saturday, July 28, 2012

Placing Public Landmarks - Recessed Porticos in 3 I-Shaped Atlanta Buildings

These still "class up the joint." One now serves as a Y.W.C.A. after almost 70 years as a church. The other two are abandoned for now.

Architecture tourists can learn something from these. But as your know-nothing host, I can only ask questions.


Are there similar buildings in the Atlanta area? What are the precedents for buildings like these?

Where do public landmarks belong?

This quote from Jane Jacobs rings true to me, a partial explanation of why some of our streets are beloved while others are bores.
"Most landmarks and focal points in cities - of which we need more, not fewer - come from the contrast of use radically different from its surroundings, and therefore inherently special-looking, happily located to make some drama and contrast of the inherent difference ... noble buildings ... set within the matrix of the city, instead being sorted out and withdrawn into 'courts of honor'"- Page 228, ”The Death and Life of Great American Cities” - Jane Jacobs, Vintage Books Edition 1991
The 1930 Lizzie Chapel in Inman Park is the least detailed. Though abandoned and surrounded by many of Atlanta's best Victorians, I like it every time.

Broad shoulders, ionic columns in antis, pediment, attic story. I can imagine the life this added on Sundays, and Wednesdays, and for big Saturday weddings in it's heyday.

The arms if the "I" aren't pronounced but there they are. The pilasters suggest another recessed portico.

The 1924 First Associate Reformed Prebyterian Church was re-purposed as the Northeast Intown YWCA in 1991. It's active 7 days a week. (Re-purposed churches from

P4012529-VaHi-Church-Columns-In-Antis built 1924 YWCA
Columns in antis, massive entablature, a suggestion of a gable, fine steps for people watching. I think Highland Avenue strollers get a boost every time they pass. I do.

It may be stretching to call it an "I." It's a capital "T" or wobbly "H." Fine work by Surber & Barber Architects and Carter-DeGolian General Contractors kept this building vital and flexible. I wonder what those tall sanctuary windows were like when it was a church. You might be interested in the National Register of Historic Places Registration Form for the Virginia-Highlands Historic District.

The 1926 Crum & Forster Building by Atlanta architects, Ed Ivey and Lewis Crook was an office building. It's abandoned, owned by Georgia Tech, and at risk.

The details are Italian rather than Greek but the portico and the "I" are there.

I think this is a fine building but I haven't fallen in love with it. How well does it serve as a public landmark?

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