Tuesday, April 5, 2022

Preservation Watch: 94 North Fifth Street

In February 2018, Gossips did a post about 94 North Fifth Street called "Take the Preservation Challenge." At the time, the house was for sale at the remarkably low price of $139,900. According to tax records, the house was sold for that amount in December 2018.

In the fall of 2020, those of us who care about such things were shocked to discover that the wrap-around porch with its intricate lattice brackets had been removed, without benefit of review by the Historic Preservation Commission. At this point, according to tax records, the house had changed ownership twice since being purchased in December 2018 for $139,900. 

In January 2021, when the house finally did come before the Historic Preservation Commission, it was explained that the porch had been removed "as a result of miscommunication." The HPC was assured that the details, particularly the ornate lattice brackets, had been preserved, and the porch would be reconstructed exactly as it had been.

Yesterday, a reader alerted me that the porch was back. 

The porch is still missing its railings, but the brackets are in place. It appears that the brackets were reproduced. Unfortunately, the new brackets seem all to be of uniform size, whereas the original brackets were different in size and design depending on the distance between the porch posts. What was uniform with the original brackets was the space between the brackets just beneath the beam. Now the brackets are the same, and the space between them at the top is different. 

The house in 2020, before the porch was removed
The house today, with the reconstructed porch



  1. I prefer the before colors, they make the house more interesting and vibrant (?). More appropriate for the structure. Oh well.

  2. One designer has a sense of aesthetics, and one does not. The restoration with the uneven spaces between the decorative woodwork is an assault to my eyes. It was done that way of course because it is less complicated and presumably cheaper to have a standard size for the decorative woodwork. And now they have a butt ugly building to show for it - an example of being pound foolish and penny wise on steroids.