Saturday, October 16, 2010

Echoes of S.W. Green: Brick Man

"Brick Man," as I've come to know him, is now one of the fixtures of the VA Footprint site.  He cleans bricks from foundation piers that are left as refuse when crews demolish or move houses, as seen here in front of the S.W. Green Mansion, once home to one of the most prominent and enterprising African American men in the city.

While it's difficult to tell just how strictly the Architectural Salvage Agreement is being enforced (Habit's ReStore is supposed to be the exclusive recipient of "all" salvaged items from the VA and UMC sites - so long as the house is designated as historical by the PA's list and removal of the items would not endanger worker health), it's clear that refuse bricks left when the excavators withdraw are not covered in the list of salvage elements covered by the PA:

• Doors;
• Wood front façade windows (including dormer windows)
• Brackets;
• Mantels;
• Foundation vents;
• Turned and/or solid wood columns;
• Louvered wood shutters, including appropriate hardware; and
• Decorative “gingerbread” trim, including quoins

Thus, Brick Man's entrepreneurial efforts are recovering value from the site that would otherwise be lost.

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