Black Mountain resident looks to preserve home
Mikkel Hansen is on mission to preserve his home.
The home, built in the mid-1950s by architect Clyde Merrill, sits on two lots between Hilltop Road and Fairway Drive in Black Mountain.
Hansen said he believes the home is historic and should be preserved.
He said he began this journey a little more than a year ago because of some changes made by the town.
“I call it irresponsible spot zoning,” Hansen said. “The spot zoning affected property that really ought not to change zoning.”
Hansen said the spot zoning is an effort to add more houses to the area. He said that because his house sits on two separate lots that span nearly an acre, several more homes could be built if his is torn down.
“There isn’t an empty lot around here, so if they can rezone this, somebody can make a lot of money on putting three houses on here instead of one,” Hansen said. “As an architect, I really felt that this ought to be preserved.”
Before Hansen moved in, the house had only two previous owners, the original architect and then a doctor.
Hansen said he bought the house in 1990 and moved in Oct. 1.
Prior to moving to Black Mountain, Hansen and his family lived in Chicago for 35 years. He said he and his wife moved to the South after their children grew up and left home because he wanted to live “where (he) didn’t have to shovel snow.”
Before Chicago, the couple lived in Kentucky, their first stop after moving from their home country of Denmark in 1954.
Hansen said he and his wife, who died of Parkinson’s a few years ago, looked for homes throughout the late 1980s before landing in Black Mountain.
Once they purchased the home, they did some slight remodeling, including adding windows in the dining room and removing carpet in favor of hardwood floors.
Now that he is working to preserve the home, Hansen said he cannot make any changes to the house or landscaping without first contacting the Historic Preservation Foundation of North Carolina as his home is now under their protection.
Hansen said he was moved to work to preserve the home because he, as a former architect, appreciates the design and work that went into creating it.
“As architecture goes, you either appreciate it or you don’t,” Hansen said. “In this case, I obviously appreciated what this guy did for himself and his wife.”
By: Karrigan Monk, Black Mountain News
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