Design Review Board
Updates for 2-D-20-DT


Level 2: Major alteration of an existing building/structure; Level 2: Addition to an existing building/structure

This proposal is to renovate the Mechanics Bank and Trust Company building at 612 S. Gay Street and add an addition to the rear that will connect to the Tennessee Theatre building and provide access between the two buildings. Demolition (sheets AD300, AD301, AD302, AD303, AD103): 1) Remove all existing windows except the arched, stained glass window above the main entrance and three large metal framed windows on the south (alley) elevation (Level 1 & 2). 2) Remove the awning on the Gay Street elevation. 3) Remove the fire escapes on the north and south elevations. 4) Remove doors and brick infill for new windows on the south elevation, as noted. Windows (sheets A300, AX300, AX301, A710): 1) Install new metal clad windows as proposed on sheet A300 and A710. All windows are to have insulated, clear glass, except those proposed with spandrel glass or tinted glass. 2) Gay Street elevation -- Spandrel glass is proposed in all windows on the left (north) side of the elevation (all Levels), the upper portion of the right (south) window (Level 2 only). NOTE: The spandrel glass is proposed to hide the existing elevator and associated wall that is behind the windows on the left side of the building. The spandrel glass on the Level 2 portion of large window to the right of the main entrance is proposed to hide an existing interior wall. 3) Gay Street elevation — The lower portion of the large window to the right of the main entrance is proposed with black tinted glass. NOTE: This is proposed to better more closely match the spandrel glass in the other windows and the interior space is utilitarian in nature. 4) South (alley) elevation — Spandrel glass will be used in the upper portion of five windows on Level 1 and all of three small windows on Level 2. NOTE: The spandrel glass is proposed to hide existing floor joists for Level 2 and existing interior walls Level 2. Gay Street elevation (sheets A301, AX301): 1) Replace the existing, non-original, sconces with new sconces that illuminate the faҫade vertically. The sconces will remain in the same location, on either side of the main entrance of the building. 2) Replace the existing, non-original, metal storefront door system and replace with a new single wood door with glass and decorative hardware to mimic the design of the original doors. New mosaic tiles will also be installed at the entry. NOTE: A single door is required to meet the current building codes because two doors of the appropriate width will not fit within the existing opening. South (alley) elevation (sheets A302, AX300): 1) Infill three existing basement level windows and one Level 2 doorway with brick to match the existing. 2) Remove existing grills and infill openings with brick to match the existing. 3) Repair stone and brick cornice to match existing. North elevation (sheet A303): 1) Infill wall openings with brick to match the existing, as indicated on sheet A303. 2) Remove and infill one existing, small window on Level 6 with brick to match the existing. East (rear) elevation and Addition (sheets AX300, A304, A170): 1) Construct addition that is the full height of the subject property, and one-story taller than the Tennesse Theatre building where it will attach. The addition will be inset from the south (alley) elevation approximately 1'-0" and inset from the north elevation approximately 0'-6". 2) The new addition will have horizontally oriented corrugated metal siding and insulated translucent wall panels. The translucent panels will only be on the south elevation. 3) There will be an opening under the addition that provides access to the rear of the adjacent building to the north and egress door for the subject building and access to the basement level Tennesse Theatre building. 4) The wall covering under the addition will be aluminum composite panels.

Site Info

This building is located within the Gay Street Commercial (National Register) Historic District so the Historic Resources section of the design guidelines are applicable. The addition to the rear of the building will attach to the Tennessee Theatre which is located within the H (Historic) overlay district, so the connection must also be approved by the Historic Zoning Commission. This building was previously approved for similar renovations (8-A-16-DT) with exception to the addition to the rear. The spandrel and tinted glass on the ground level of the Gay Street elevation are not recommended by the guidelines, however, because of the existing conditions within the building, staff is recommending approval in this particular case. Regarding the tinted glass, this should have little impact on visibility into the ground floor because the windows are elevated higher than a typical storefront and the Level 1 and 2 window glass will have a more consistent look. The addition to the rear of the building is for a new stair and provides access between the subject building and the Tennessee Theatre, which has purchased the majority of the subject building. The addition will also have to be approved by the Historic Zoning Commission since the Tennessee Theatre is within the H (Historic) overlay district. The location and materials of the addition are in conformance with the recommendations of the design guidelines, which are to locate additions to the rear, do not alter, obscure or destroy significant features, and differentiate the new addition from the historic structure. Applicable guidelines: Section 1.C.1. (ROOFLINES AND ADDITIONS) Alterations of the rooflines of historic buildings are not appropriate. A one-story rooftop addition, including railings, may be possible on taller buildings if it is inconspicuous from the public right-of-way. Additions should be set back from the primary elevation of the building, and should not damage character-defining features, including parapets and side walls. These walls are often topped by coping stones offering contrasting color or texture, or contain cornices, decorative grills, chimneys, corbelled brickwork and other architectural elements. Rooftop additions are almost never appropriate on buildings less than four stories in height. GUIDELINES: 1a. Preserve or restore historic roofline features, including parapet walls and cornices. 1b. Design rooftop additions to be complementary to the historic building in terms of materials and color. 1c. Avoid construction that maintains only the historic facade. 1d. Do not alter, obscure or destroy significant features of historic resources when constructing additions. 1e. Design rooftop additions so that they are not seen from adjoining streets and sidewalks. Section 1.C.2. (STOREFRONTS) Throughout downtown, historic buildings present a front elevation with an individual facade that is usually 25-35 feet wide. The storefronts are divided horizontally into three sections: bulkheads, solid or opaque, usually 18-24 inches tall; a plate glass storefront window 6-8 feet tall; and above it, a clear or patterned glass transom. GUIDELINES: 2a. Restore and maintain storefronts as they were originally. Section 1.C.3. (ENTRANCES) Formal entrances to front facades should be retained. This includes entrances that are located above street level and accessed by exterior stairs. Altering or removing the main entrance to grant street-level access is not appropriate. GUIDELINES: 3a. Establish recessed entries, either rectangular or with slightly canted sides, which are appropriate in storefronts. 3b. Allow for multiple entries on the first floor of the building, giving access to commercial space that may be divided into bays. 3c. Provide access to upper stories through additional entries. 3d. Maintain original height and materials for doors that are consistent with the use of the building, such as residential, commercial, or banking purposes. C. HISTORIC RESOURCES Section 1.C.4. (WINDOWS) Appropriate window appearance is significant in finishing a rehabilitation project. From a preservation standpoint, the first and best answer when determining a treatment for windows is to repair rather than replace them. If that is not possible, replacing only deteriorated portions is the next best alternative to total replacement. It is possible to replace window sills, rebuild all or parts of window sashes, and replace window glass, making original windows energy efficient and functional. GUIDELINES: 4a. Repair rather than replace historic windows. 4b. Replace windows if repairs are not possible with matching windows, including duplicating design, operation, material, glass size, muntin arrangements, profiles, and trim. 4c. Insert windows with the same pane configuration, materials and size as other buildings of the same general construction date, if no original windows are present. 4d. Maintain the relationship of solids to voids with new construction that is similar to other buildings in the district, including the typical width, height, spacing, and horizontal alignment of windows. Section 1.C.5. (MASONRY) Masonry features should be retained and repaired; materials, including mortar, should match the original mortar in color and composition. Mortar joints should be sized and struck to match the original. Belt courses, string courses, dripstones, quoins and contrasting brick and stone are common. These features should be preserved and repaired if necessary, and should be introduced on infill buildings. GUIDELINES: 5a. Repair masonry with stone or brick and mortar that match the original. 5b. Do not paint masonry that has never been painted. Section 1.C.11. (INAPPROPRIATE PRIOR CHANGES) Buildings may have been altered over time; some of those alterations may be inappropriate. In planning exterior rehabilitation, inappropriate changes should be reversed. GUIDELINE: 11a. During rehabilitation of historic buildings, restore components to the original or an approximate design.

Staff Recommendation

APPROVE Certificate 2-D-20-DT as submitted.

Case Fileposted 2/19/2020
612 S. Gay St.
Whitney Manahan, McCarty Holsaple McCarty
Historic Tennessee Theatre Foundation, Inc

Actions from the February meeting