Historic Augusta released its 12th annual Endangered Properties List on Tuesday, revealing four properties that are in need of revitalization or face the risk of having its historical value compromised by destruction or dilapidation.
Since 2006, the organization has sought to preserve numerous properties in Augusta by establishing a list to attract investors and groups to those properties. In its 12-year history, the list has helped save many properties.
The announcement of the 2018 endangered properties was held in The Old Court of the Ordinary which was on the endangered list in 2014. An alliance, including members of Historic Augusta, is working toward turning the building into the Augusta Jewish Museum. In 2015, the city had plans to demolish the building to create more parking for the Municipal Building which is next door to the old Court building constructed in 1860.
“This is a happy place to have (the announcement) because it does appear that it will be successfully saved,” executive director Erick Montgomery said.
The 2018 list includes:
New Savannah Bluff Lock and Dam
Montgomery said the flow of water by the lock and dam built in 1937 is a vital source of drinking and industry water as well as recreation. Historic Augusta recently learned that the property is eligible to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places, a federal program which allows for special protections of the property. Montgomery strongly encourages local, state and federal officials to find funding to restore the property.
Richmond Hotel/Richmond Summit
Previously a hotel, the 136-unit apartment building now known as the Richmond Summit is covered under the Section 8 Substantial Rehabilitation Program. According to Augusta Chronicle archives, the Augusta Fire Department responded to 158 calls from Richmond Summit in 2014, costing taxpayers $22,456. Those alarms were were a result of an unintentional alarm or smoke detector activation.
With an influx of activity planned for the Miller Theater when it reopens in January 2018 just a few lots away from Richmond Summit, something more productive could be done with the property, Montgomery said.
“We believe Augusta can do better with the Richmond Summit,” he said.
1154-1160 Broad St.
Although the stretch of property on Broad Street was acquired in 2016 by a hotel developer, no official plans have been announced for the property. Historic Augusta felt the need to place it on the the list to protect the character of the historic district.
“We are also assured that preservation of these buildings are being considered,” Montgomery said. “We applaud that and we encourage that and we look forward to working with the new property owners as they develop their plan.”
202 Greene St.
This Olde Town property is the only residential listing on the 2018 list. The home was constructed in the 1880s and survived the Great Fire of 1916 which destroyed nearly 25 blocks of downtown Augusta. With the incoming “cyber boom,” Montgomery said this property has a lot of opportunity.