Author Topic: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)  (Read 5824 times)

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Offline Jeffrey

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History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« on: November 22, 2007, 06:22:57 PM »




I use Sanborn maps, old photos, a 1956 downtown map, and city directories to explore the growth and decline of a downtown block.   The one bounded by Third, St Clair, Second, and Jefferson.

The earliest good map is from the 1880s, and shows a mix of things, churches, houses, and stores of various kinds.   The thumbnail map shows the original town lots in red.  The original Dayton plat had huge lots, only 8 per block, which were subdivided and resubdivided.



The Lutzenberger collection has this great before and after set of NE corner of Third and Jefferson.  I guess Lutzenberger was shooting Dayton long enough to be able to do rephotography.





Once can see the evolution of commercial architecture in that set, from the small brick buildings of the canal or pre-canal era, then the rows of commercial buildings, then jumps in scale…

Example of the scaling up of commercial is the south side of the block, on 3rd Street.  The big 4 story commercial block (the Huffman Block) is probably from the 1870s.   All this burned in 1913 and was rebuilt.



By 1918 one sees the post fire reconstruction on Third, an early filling station on St Clair and Third, and larger scale buildings, like the Simms Building on Jefferson.  A very late livery stable is visible on St Clair just south of the alley (Artz Lane), and the little church on the St Clair just north of 3rd side was replaced with a different one (brick neo-gothic, perhaps Akron plan).



Areil view from the early 1920s.  Note the four old houses on 2nd Street.  They were rooming houses in he 1920s.



Interesting as examples of early vernacular architecture.  Hard to really date these, but a guess is that they date to the Civil War era or earlier, as they do show up on an 1869 map. 



And also how some are not like the houses one sees in the Oregon, as they have that tripartite façade and entrance directly from the front.  No “L” or side entrance.  Though the shallow roof slope and the gable treatment on the far right one resembles older houses in the Oregon.

These houses resemble most a heavily altered house on 1st next to the Episcopal Church.  Perhaps the wide lots of downtown allowed wider houses?



They were torn down in 1928/29 to make way for a parking lot, one of the early ones in Dayton (originally associated with an auto dealership, I thing).  Yet there are still some things back next to the alley.



(one can also see the construction from the 1920s, with the large Rubicon Building on Jefferson, and some other lower 1920s business blocks replacing 19th century things, like that livery stable).

By 1956 not much change, except the parking lot has expanded to clear out the outbuildings along the alley.   Note the big warehouse and storage buildings south of the alley.  I think they were built after the 1913 flood/fire, too. 



By 2000 the block has mostly been cleared of structures, with only the largest buildings still standing (with some exceptions).



Next a series of black plans in five year intervals showing how ground becomes figure, how buildings stop defining space and instead become objects floating in space (though that statement breaks down a bit for the 3rd Street side)






(closing with speculation on the next removal)

Next, some rephotography:
















(I’m guessing 1850s for that corner building)






(the little house next to the billboards dates to 1829 and was a station on the Underground Railroad)






(too bad about that corner building.  The material was red sandstone, and the building housed Dayton’s first head shop c. 1970)

Finally, sometimes a parking lot is just a parking lot…



 :wink:
« Last Edit: November 22, 2007, 07:15:54 PM by Jeffrey »
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Offline conovercourt

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2007, 08:09:14 PM »
Great study, Jeffrey.

Were the churches in bad shape when they were pulled down?

Offline Jeffrey

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2007, 08:24:52 PM »
I dont know about the smaller one to the north.  It was Lutheran then changed denominations to Baptist before it closed.

The one more to the south, that lasted into the 1990s, was vacant for a long time, then it was taken over by a minister who was running a sort of urban/alternative ministry. That didn't work and the church closed again.  It was in bad shape and not secured, as people were breaking into it and vandalizing it...homeless people and junkys.  From what I can recall it had holes in the roof or in the windows.

Though it looks small on the maps the place seemed pretty big from the outside.

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Offline oakiehigh

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2007, 09:24:53 PM »
True losses!
...there's a reason that Elm Street and Main Street resonate in our cultural memory. It's not because we're sentimental saps. It's because this pattern of human ecology produced places that worked wonderfully well, and which people deeply loved. - Jim Kunstler

Offline Eric1

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2007, 08:13:55 AM »
This is my first time posting.. but..

Ive seen a lot of your photos on Dayton, jeff, and was wondering where you found your older images of the city?

Im a senior history major at Wright State, and I like to study Dayton history, but ive never quite been able to find the images you scrounge up.

Offline ColDayMan

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2007, 01:56:51 PM »


Ugh.
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Offline X

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2007, 12:23:29 PM »
Another fascinating study.  Do you ever publish a version of these studies?

Offline BrianJWest

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2007, 08:00:59 PM »
Nice job, Jeff.  If you'd like to tour the buildings, give me a call at 974-4868.  We have space available as well, if anyone needs 1200-20,000sf...    :laugh:

Offline Jeffery

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2011, 12:36:11 PM »
Interestingly that parking lot is now the site of a gay pride celebration.  That and Courthouse Square.


Offline KJP

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2011, 01:29:52 PM »
Another excellent study, told as a story.
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Offline mrnyc

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2011, 01:49:57 PM »
great work as always!

so you're saying that fantastic rounded corner romanesque building had a headshop and was up as late as 1970? did you happen to uncover why it was torn down? sadly just for parking i would guess (?)  :-(
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Offline Jeffery

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2011, 07:34:35 AM »
^
sorry, dont recall the reason why they tore it down.  In 1970 a lot of this part of downtown was still intact...believe it o not

Offline ClevelandOhio

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2011, 10:57:58 AM »
Parking lots > Historic Buildings? How could have anyone ever believe that was true?

Offline OTR

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2011, 05:16:24 PM »
Very detailed research, Jeffery. Impressive.

Any chance you've ever researched Over-the-Rhine like this?

Offline Eighth and State

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2011, 08:52:12 PM »

From the little research that I have done, I have concluded that one could spend a lifetime researching Over-the-Rhine to the level of detail that Jeff has done on his posts.

Offline Jeffery

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #15 on: August 01, 2011, 06:41:04 AM »
Sorry for the belated reply..I was in Chicago and Milwaukee researching some old neighborhoods to were I have family connections...and enjoying Germanfest in Milwaukee, too.  If anyone here wants to see a good model for urban revitalization they should head to Milwaukee.  It is an old Great Lakes city that is in Great Shape...though it does have its ghetto/slum areas (saw that too).

@@@

Anyway, yes...

.....I figure there is probably tons down on OTR and Cincinnati in general, though it would be fun and maybe more worthwhile  to research than Dayton.  Dayton has better documentation than one would expect, too.   

But, specifically for OTR there is a masters or phd thesis at either UC or Miami that does a neighborhood analyses showing how buildings were subsituted...the author digitized two old insurance maps and somehow made them print in the same scale, so you could see the overlay between old and new, showing how the neighborhood got denser.   Im pretty sure I posted on this somewhere on this board.

 I guess you could use OhioLink to try to find the theses if you want to read it for yourself (use a UC community borrowers card, or go the library).

Offline OTR

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #16 on: August 01, 2011, 08:09:36 AM »
I'm intrigued by this OTR thesis. I'm going to look for it. If you remember anything about it that may help me find it, I'd appreciate it. Thanks

Offline Jeffery

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #17 on: August 01, 2011, 09:48:36 AM »
I bumped the Urban Ohio thead for you....its in General Discussion.  The theses is cited in the thread header, I think.

Offline OTR

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Re: History of a Parking Lot (D8N)(mostly diagrams & maps)
« Reply #18 on: August 01, 2011, 02:14:33 PM »
Just saw it. Excellent stuff!

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