Politics & Government

NC approves sale of two more Blount Street houses

The roof of the McGee House has collapsed, leaving the inside in ruin. It will be demolished.
The roof of the McGee House has collapsed, leaving the inside in ruin. It will be demolished. rstradling@newsobserver.com

The Council of State has approved the sale of two more houses in the Blount Street Historic District, apparently satisfied that it will be okay to tear one of them down.

The McGee House was built in the late 1940s, decades after the other houses in the historic district, and is in terrible shape. The state is selling McGee along with its larger, Victorian neighbor, the Coble-Helms House, for $710,000 to Double Fault LLC, a development company that plans to turn Coble-Helms into offices and tear McGee down.

The Council of State was supposed to consider the sale last month but delayed a decision at the urging of Lt. Gov. Dan Forest. He wanted to make sure demolishing the house was consistent with the preservation goals of the legislation that authorized the sale of the houses in 2003.

The council approved the sale Tuesday without discussion.

The state acquired McGee, Coble-Helms and other houses along North Blount Street as part of a plan hatched in the late 1960s to create parking lots for the nearby government office complex. Many of the houses that survived were used for state offices.

Since last summer, the state has put 12 houses in the Blount Street Historic District on the market, and all 12 have either sold or are under contract. All but the McGee House will be restored for private offices or as single-family homes.

Richard Stradling: 919-829-4739, @RStradling

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