NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A historic Nashville home is getting a big facelift, but not everyone is happy about the changes.

The home is located on 10th Avenue South and was built in the 1880s. The home is believed to be the oldest home in that area.

“It was built around the 1880s and it was Italianate cottage. You probably drive by a million times and never notice it, but it was a really special house,” said Carol Ashworth.

Ashworth has lived in the neighborhood for 20 years. She and other neighbors have been working to help keep the home intact.

“It’s basically been dismantled. The neighbors worked for about two years with Metro Historic to protect the historic home under a historic conservation zoning overlay,” said Ashworth.

The attorney for the developer said the original plan was to have the home demolished.

“The demolition permit was denied. The builder appealed it to the historic commission. It was denied again, so the builder submitted revised renovation plans,” said Adam LaFevor.

The home is a part of a conservation zoning overlay. Homes in those areas can be remodeled.

“This house is touchable, so to speak. You can renovate it as long as those plans are approved by the historic commission,” said LaFevor.

There is another type of historic zoning called preservation zoning. That type is more restrictive and builders can’t do as much work on them.

“Preservation overlays are in historical areas where you see the really old houses that are all together in a neighborhood.”

LaFevor said there was a lot that had to be removed and changed for environmental and health reasons.

“The builder removed the vinyl siding that was on the house, completely permissible by the historic commission. Underneath the vinyl siding was asbestos shingles which had been cut and compromised.”

The builders were able to keep a few things on the house.

“The fixtures inside that were salvageable were removed. There was not a lot left in the house. To our knowledge, we have not violated any of the restrictions imposed by the historic commission.”

News4 spoke to Metro Historic Commission which said it did have to put a stop work order in place for a brief time last week due to miscommunication on some materials that were supposed to be left in place. However, the commission said everything is back on track and said the developer is following the proper procedures.

If you would like to learn more about historic zoning overlays, click here.


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