Subway, McDonald's, Hooters, Wings, Tattoo Parlor??? What a field day we all have had...over my lot on Highway 12! And yes, it is my lot where the house has been razed. And it's been fun to read the creative comments about it. There is no telling what speculations and rumors are circulating around the village (and among readers of this blog) about what is going on there.
First, a little history. The lot in question is a portion of what was once my great grandparents' property (which included frontage on Howard Street, the present-day Island Inn property, and extended from where the Slushie Stand is...all the way to School Road). Over the years it was divided among descendants, and portions were eventually sold out of the family. My grandparents' property (the house I now live in, and the lot in question) were sold out of the family in the mid 1960s. The homeplace (then about 100 years old) was in disrepair, and the new owners erected a double wide home on the empty lot in the early 1970s.
I had an opportunity to purchase the property about 25 years ago. It took two decades to save enough money to restore the homeplace to historic standards (see http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/howardhome.htm, and click on the links at the top of the page to follow the restoration of this house; I apologize for several missing photos). The double wide was of inferior construction, and in sad condition when I purchased the property, but I rented it to generate a bit of income. Over the years it continued to deteriorate. In recent years I decided that the value of the building did not warrant the costs for major repairs and have decided to raze the building.
As one reader commented, it had become an eyesore. Of course, the building has no historic significance, and was not worth repairing. I did not want to keep an unsightly, abandoned building in the middle of Ocracoke village, so I contracted to have it torn down and removed.
For anyone curious about details, the building was demolished with a permit from Hyde County, and was disposed of properly. Certain parts were salvaged, but much was not (the aluminum siding, for example, was glued to a fiberboard backing which made it cost prohibitive to recycle).
Many people have asked me what I plan to do with the property. At this time I have no plans. I may simply use it as an extension of my yard, or I might some day build a small cottage there, or rent the property for a small business or public usage. Maybe it would be the perfect place for a wind turbine...or a nuclear reactor??
I hope Bill has something to share tomorrow that will take our minds off my lot. In the meanwhile, enjoy the spring, and wave when you pass me in the village.
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is about "Ocracats" and was written by Pat Garber. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news031710.htm.