Wednesday, September 16, 2009

College Hill neigborhood

Today we ventured off campus to begin our observations of the area surrounding UNCG. We began to walk down Tate Street towards Carr Street. Throughout the neighborhood, the building type I saw most often was the first one on our worksheet (the 2 story house with a pitched roof and front/side porch). This prevalent building type gives the neighborhood a sense of unity and togetherness. All along Tate Street, there were a few things that I noticed that rarely or never appeared. First, there was only one house that I saw that had shutters. It seemed to stick out from all of the others because of this specific addition that no other house had. There were also very few driveways at the houses closest to campus, but as we got further away, I noticed more driveways. The lack of driveways really was interesting to me because in my neighborhood back home, all of the houses have driveways and not having one would be very inconvenient for my family because we have 3 cars and my dad's work truck. Parking in the road would not work because they simply wouldn't all fit. Even in the College Hill neighborhood, it seems like driveways would be a necessary thing for a few reasons. First, the buildings that house several college students would need one for the number of cars that would be there at all times. I know that the houses weren’t originally intended for college students, but even single family residences could use a driveway if the occupants have more than one car. Second, Tate Street is a very busy street, and having cars parked on both sides of the road takes away from the space to actually drive in. We witnessed this on Tuesday when we saw the trash truck having to be navigated through the space so that it wouldn't hit the cars on either side of it. Another detail that I noticed about many of the houses were the porches, both front and side. It seems like having a meeting space that is outside of the house is very important to the neighborhood, which adds to the value of community and neighborhood.
Most of the buildings had wood siding, which requires more maintenance than other materials. It is also susceptible to termites and ants, which can be a pain to get rid of. The wood trim used on many of the houses also has a high environmental cost because if it is damaged by water or anything, it has to be completely replaced. However, it wouldn’t be terribly hard to install/replace.

There were a few buildings that didn’t fit the stereotypical house of the neighborhood: the church, the concrete-looking building, and the cubical brick building. These seem to be added at a different time to the neighborhood. I did some more research on the stucco building and found that it is an apartment building called Winburn Court, and it features several Spanish Revival elements, like the stucco walls and red tile roof. The only information about the church building that I could find was that it is supposedly the Friendship Monthly Meeting church. There wasn’t a lot of information about that place.

No comments:

Post a Comment