City Names Recipients of Historic Preservation Funds

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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City Names Recipients of Historic Preservation Funds

Posted: 05/24/2017
The City of Knoxville’s Community Development Department has selected 14 projects to receive $595,007 in Historic Preservation Funds for the 2016-17 budget year. Structures and projects awarded grants include the long-empty Cal Johnson Building on State Street as well as the redevelopment of former Sevier Heights Baptist Church in South Knoxville and the former Rayl School property on Magnolia Avenue.

“These funds help improve historic structures and benefit the surrounding neighborhoods,” said Ken McMahon, Economic Development Project Manager for the City of Knoxville. “This year’s grants promise to preserve history and character as well as create job opportunities and future improvements.”

A committee evaluated the 23 applications – the most received since the fund’s creation – for their eligibility, cost feasibility, project readiness, and community benefit.

The total amount granted includes the $500,000 allocated in Mayor Madeline Rogero’s current budget plus $95,007 of unused funds from the two previous years. Additional expenses are administrative costs for title searches and recording expenses, estimated at $2,500.

Mayor Rogero established the Historic Preservation Fund in the 2014-15 budget to help fill financing gaps for renovation of historic properties. This week, City Council approved renewal of the fund for the 2017-18 budget. 
“Knoxville is lucky to have as many historic buildings as we do,” said Becky Wade, Community Development Director. “These investments by the City preserve those structures for future uses.”

The projects selected to receive grants are:

•  Baker Creek Bottoms Chapel (former Sevier Heights Baptist Church), $150,000
•  Former Rayl School property (site of now-closed Free Service Tire on Magnolia Avenue), $150,000
•  Cal Johnson Building, $100,000
•  Crafty Bastard Brewing, $47,010
•  Keeton’s Jewelers Building on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., $40,031
•  Downtown YMCA, $36,521
•  Bijou Theatre, $33,903
•  Mabry-Hazen House Museum, $16,393 (for three projects, including the guest house front porch, window restoration and caretaker cottage back porch)
•  Knox Heritage, $9,900 (for National Register of Historic Places nomination applications for Pryor Brown Garage and Emory Place Historic District extension) 
•  Magnolia Avenue United Methodist Church Parsonage, $8,649 
•  Lawhorn Cottage on Prospect Place, $2,600 (for National Register of Historic Places nomination application)

Click here for additional information about past Historic Preservation Fund projects.