Still Hope for College Hill Neighborhood

I’m disappointed that College Hill has been removed from Preservation Review. The argument that the neighborhood is too far gone to save is the wrong attitude.

If anything, the fact that so much has been lost warrants that what is left should be preserved that much more carefully.

Update: See the houses below in 2017, and in the winter of 2019. The wood frame house is now gone. See the houses further down the street in the photo below in this post from the winter of 2019.

While admittedly several streets in the neighborhood have lost large amounts of housing stock, there are ample survivors on neighboring blocks that can help inspire the in-fill that could eventually fill the holes.

I’m just really worried that when an entire neighborhood is swept away, we end up with bland, suburban-style housing that looks bad, is built cheaply, and ends up abandoned even faster than the original building stock.

Take the example of the failed housing development in nearby Hyde Park; the last thing we need is “blank slate” development that always seems to fail.

What remains in College Hill, which is substantial, should be likened to the remaining good teeth in a mouth; why on Earth would we want to pull more teeth when so many have already been lost? Do we want partial dentures, or pull all the healthy teeth out for an entire new set, and risk having no teeth at all?

2 Comments Add yours

  1. miguelito says:

    I agree that College Hill has a lot of potential, especially east of Grand. Several organizations are working here, including Grace Hill Settlement and Connections to Success. I've also heard Habitat is planning a build. And The Bissell is soon to get a facelift!! Nice pics.

  2. I drive past this neighborhood on a daily basis on my commute to the suburbs (I live in the city..).I don't know what happened to this area or why it was allowed to decline so badly. The homes are large and built with ornamental brick and iron work. This used to be a nice place. It should not be torn down. There is plenty to save.

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