Park Place Local Historic District
The majority of the Park Place Historic District is devoted to single-family residential use interspersed with some recent and historic multi-family housing. Commercial and municipal development has encroached on the edges and along the main traffic corridors, and some residences, particularly on West Center Street, have been converted into offices. Development in the district is fairly dense, although all houses have front and back yards and narrow side yards. Setback from the public right-of-way and spatial arrangements vary. Stylish two-story residences on West First, Second, and Third Avenues are situated on large lots with deep setbacks. On Park, Vance, Williams, and Payne Streets, bungalows built in the 1920s are positioned near the street and close to one another resulting in a harmonious rhythm of form, massing, and materials.
Most houses are frame and one or two stories in height. Weatherboard and other types of wood, brick and synthetic siding are typical exterior sheathing materials, although a few dwellings are executed in stone veneer. Apartment buildings and duplexes stand among the single-family homes and detached garages, sheds, and apartments accompany some dwellings. Garages are usually one-story, front gable, frame buildings, but some brick apartments and garages built to complement residences are found behind or to the side of their principal resources.
The dwellings, outbuildings, and commercial structures in the Park Place Local Historic District represent the architectural styles and forms that were common in Lexington and throughout North Carolina from the early twentieth century through the post-World War II era. During this period, architecture reflected the social and economic changes occurring as Lexington transformed from a rural county seat to a bustling industrial town. As the population of Lexington grew, landowners near downtown took advantage of the opportunity to profit from the subdivision of their large parcels of land into smaller residential lots. This push outward from the center of town translated into the construction of houses on streets only one or two blocks beyond main arteries and commercial areas. During the 20th century's first decades, it was common for bank presidents and prosperous merchants to reside only one street away from store clerks and carpenters. While professionals and workers continued to live in relative close proximity to their work places and each other, the differences in the two groups' income and social standing were made clear by the size of their houses and the lots they occupied.
† Heather Fearnbach, Fearnbach History Services, Inc., for the City of Lexington, Business and Community Development Department, Park Place Local Historic District: Local Designation Report, Internal Review Draft, 2013, https://www.lexingtonnc.net, accessed August, 2013.
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