Sunday, April 28, 2013 @ 11:30 AM
Duration: 3 Hours 30 Minutes
Join us on Sunday, April 28 as we celebrate three historic properties in Gastonia: Loray Mill, the Armstrong Apartments, and the old Highland Memorial Hospital, sold for renovation with protective covenants by Preservation NC. We hope you can celebrate with us - please RSVP by April 22.
Online ticketing is no longer available for this event - please call 919-832-3652 x 229 or x 224 to see if there is still space available.
What's the big deal?
Schedule of activities on April 28, 11:30--4pm at the
Gastonia Conference Center, 145 S. Marietta Street:
11:30am--2pm: Champagne Brunch
Traditional mill music by Royce & Friends
12pm: Breakout session about Armstrong Apartments
1pm: Breakout session about Highland Memorial Hospital
1:30pm: Breakout session about Loray Mill
2pm: Welcome from Mayor John Bridgeman
3pm: Armstrong Apartments Ribbon Cutting (102 W. Second Avenue)
4pm: Loray Mill Highway Market Dedication (W. Franklin Boulevard at Firestone Street)
12:30--4pm: Armstrong Apartments and Highland Memorial Hospital will be open for tours.
About Saving Loray:
The preservation effort to save Loray Mill, dating back to 1992, will go down in history.
In June 1997, a headline in the International Herald Tribune read: "A Historic Textile Mill Faces the Wrecker's Ball." The article began: "The turn-of-the-century textile mill in Gastonia, North Carolina, is still an imposing brick structure, seemingly impervious to the ravages of time. But the former Loray Mill plant, once the world's largest textile mill and the site of a violent strike in 1929 that came to symbolize the labor strife then sweeping the South, now faces a wrecker's ball. Short of a last-minute miracle, its current owner...is set to demolish the 600,000-square-foot factory."
Guess what? That last-minute miracle finally happened. The generosity of Firestone Fibers and Textiles, the tenacity of Camden Development of Atlanta, the dogged advocacy of Lucy Penegar and many others, and the support of the City of Gastonia and the County of Gaston made it so.
About saving Armstrong Apartments & Highland Memorial Hospital:
Built in 1920 as a home for single teachers and business women by "Gastonia's foremost citizen," Col. C.B. Armstrong, the teacherage had deteriorated badly. Its demolition was imminent when Preservation North Carolina bought it in 2001.
It took a decade for PNC to find a buyer for the Armstrong Apartments. Many developers had tried to make the apartments deal work, but ultimately without success. Fortunately, that time was not wasted, as our effort with the apartments led to several other significant preservation victories along the way. Across the street, PNC acquired the former Gastonia Central Elementary School in 2001 and sold it to Piedmont Community Charter School, which has maintained the building's educational legacy. PNC played a critical role in saving the former First Baptist Church (now Unity Place) from destruction and aided local citizens in saving the old courthouse (now the Garland Business Center). All BIG deals for Gastonia.
In the end, the Armstrong Apartments helped save the old Highland Memorial Hospital, thanks to a "package deal" that allowed the developers to achieve some economies of scale. Dewey Anderson of Winston-Salem agreed to purchase and renovate Armstrong Apartments, if PNC found a larger project in Gastonia for his family's development firm, Landmark Asset Services.
That conversation led to the historic hospital as affordable elederly housing. Built in 1924 and expanded in 1951, Gaston County was preparing to demolish the now-vacant building. The county, in effect, turned those demolition dollars into renovation, and the rest is history.
An $11 million renovation of the hospital has been completed by Landmark, and Dewey Anderson is completing a $2.5 million rehabilitation of Armstrong Apartments. Both jobs have been done by Rehab Builders of Winston-Salem. You are invited to see the progress for yourself during our celebration!
Online ticketing for this event is no longer available, as we are past the RSVP date. Please call 919-832-3652 x 229 or x 224 to see if space is still available.
Thank you to our generous sponsors: