World-class jazz group to play at PCOC on Sunday evening; expect to start paying for Certificates of Appropriateness

rebuilt wall at 110 south mendenhall, seen from the street

The retaining wall at 110 South Mendenhall Street, long a neighborhood embarrassment, has been rebuilt and strengthened. Partial funding came from the College Hill Street Wall Program.

flyer for Oct. 23 conert by Antonio Troyols and Unit ThreeJazz pianist Antonio Truyols and his trio, Unit Three, will perform a free concert Sunday October 23, at 7 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. Truyols is former music director at PCOC and UNCG grad student who’s now working in New York and around the world (Best Band award at the Bucharest International Jazz Festival, for example). …

UNCG has closed on its purchase of the Tate Street office building most recently used as a leasing office for The Grove apartment complex. It’s next to the former Addams bookstore, which UNCG also bought recently. The university now owns three properties on Tate Street, including the former bank office at Tate and Spring Garden streets. …

Also on Tate Street, Slices closed for a couple days last week for a quick renovation. Further up the block, the upfit of the former Thai Garden for a cookie shop and new pizza place appears to have been at a standstill for the past couple months. The space has been gutted, but almost nothing else appears to have been done for weeks. …

Beginning with the city’s next fiscal year, starting in July 2017, you can expect to pay a fee for certificates of appropriateness. A survey of other cities around the state showed only Greensboro and Winston-Salem still give them away free. The city manager’s office wants the costs to be borne by property owners in the historic districts, whose investments have raised the value of properties — and the city’s tax revenues — immensely. …

Duke Energy logoDuke Energy will hold a meeting about its upcoming tree trimming work in College Hill and Westerwood on Tuesday, November 15, 6 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the Café of First Baptist Church, 1000 W. Friendly Avenue.  The Café is in the Activity Center adjacent to the main building. …

Rain from Hurricane Matthew caused drainage problems for a homeowner in the 200 block of Tate Street, whose property backs up to Edgar Street. The city refused to do anything about it, claiming Edgar isn’t a city street. That’s odd, since city workers did a very nice job of fixing potholes there last month. …

If you’re giving out candy on Halloween, please go to the Treat Map on and put yourself on the list so trick-or-treaters will know to stop by. … UNCG has issued its annual Clery Act report on campus crime, as required by federal law. The 54-page report is mostly boilerplate about policies, procedures, blah blah blah. Skip to Page 40 for the actual statistics, which, frankly, are a bunch of raw numbers that don’t tell you much. …

The former warehouse on Spring Garden at the Greenway is taking shape as a restaurant complex. Click here to see what it looks like so far, courtesy of The Business Journal. It’s called Morehead Foundry and is expected to open in the next month…

Posted in Businesses, City Government, Duke Energy, Edgar Street, Mendenhall Street, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, Spring Garden Street, Tate Street, Trees, UNCG | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tiny but buildable vacant lot on S. Mendenhall for sale

an empty lot partially covered by random vegetation

The lot at 609 South Mendenhall Street, seen from the street, with neighboring 615 South Mendenhall in the background

The long-vacant lot at 609 South Mendenhall has been put up for sale by its owner, the College Hill Neighborhood Association. The city has confirmed that the tiny lot (3,320 square feet) is buildable.

The neighborhood association will place a deed restriction on the lot, requiring that the property must be owner occupied (i.e., the property must be the principle residence of the owner of record).

To ensure that development of the lot does not diminish the historic character of the neighborhood , the purchaser/s will be required before closing to prepare plans to build one single-family house meeting these development standards:

  • The house will not exceed two stories above grade.
  • Maximum house width will be thirty-five feet.
  • Parking will not be located within the front yard setback.
  • The house will have a front covered porch.
  • The purchaser/s will obtain approval of the house and site development plans by Historic District Commission and any other approvals required by other city agencies.
  • Before closing, the purchaser/s will submit evidence satisfactory to the CHNA board of sufficient financing to construct the house and site improvements.
  • After closing, the purchaser/s will begin construction within six months of closing and obtain a Certificate of Occupancy from the City of Greensboro within 24 months of closing.

The lot has been advertised on and since October 10. The neighborhood association is accepting bids on the property through Sunday, October 23 Saturday October 22 [updated 10-19-2016, 1:46 p.m.] A decision on a sale could be made as soon as the monthly board meeting on Monday, October 24.

Posted in City Government, College Hill Neighborhood Association, Mendenhall Street, Real Estate | Leave a comment

October highlights: Voter registrations ends, early voting begins

October calendar with key dates notedEvents in College Hill and nearby this month.

Recurring on Tuesdays

  • In*Spire Meditation group
    Tuesdays, noon, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, 501 South Mendenhall Street, in the Sanctuary. The meditation period is less than an hour and is open to the public.
  • Noon at the ‘Spoon
    Second Tuesday each month, Weatherspoon Art Museum, Spring Garden Street at Tate Street, a 20-minute exploration of a new exhibition.
  • Taco Tuesday Beginners Bike Ride
    Tuesdays, rolling at 6:30 p.m., ReCycles, 908-A Spring Garden Street
    A social ride, an opportunity to meet new riders who wish to get outside and maybe work up to longer rides over the course of the summer. Initially, the ride will be averaging around 6-10 miles, no-drop, at a pace averaging around 10+, then building through the summer.  Afterward, the Bandito Burrito Food Truck is at South Mendenhall and Spring Garden on Tuesdays.

UNCG event calendars


  • Through Sunday December 11
    Unbranded: A Century of White Women, 1915–2015
    Exhibit of work by Hank Willis Thomas, showing how advertising campaigns have both marketed products to white women and marketed those women as a feminine standard.
    Weatherspoon Art Museum
  • Friday October 7
    7 p.m., “Basie Meets the Duke,” UNCG Jazz Ensemble I and II
    Music Building, Recital Hall
  • Sunday October 16
    Noon to 2 p.m., Chili Festival
    College Place United Methodist Church, 509 South Tate Street
    All proceeds go to the Spartan Open Pantry
  • Thursday October 20
    Early voting begins for November 8 general election (Early voting schedule and locations)
  • Monday October 24
    7 p.m., Neighborhood Association board meeting
    Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, Fellowship Hall, 501 South Mendenhall Street
  • Wednesday October 26
    4 p.m., Historic Preservation Commission meeting
    Melvin Municipal Office Building, Plaza Level conference room, 300 West Washington Street
Posted in College Place UMC, Elections, UNCG, UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts | Leave a comment

Transformer pops at Spring Garden and Mendenhall

A blown transformer, a burning tree and a fire truck light up the rainy evening on Spring Garden Street.

A blown transformer, a burning tree and a fire truck light up the rainy evening on Spring Garden Street at South Mendenhall.

A Duke Energy transformer exploded above Spring Garden Street at Mendenhall on Monday evening. By 9 p.m., the fire department had arrived, and a police officer was beginning to block traffic on Spring Garden. For whatever reason, the power remained on throughout the neighborhood (as of 9 p.m., at least). The tree on fire, the rain, the red and blue lights and at least three loud bangs from the transformer made for a pretty gaudy scene.

Posted in Duke Energy, Mendenhall Street, Public Safety, Spring Garden Street | Leave a comment

More Duke Energy tree trimming scheduled for College Hill; work will be done on almost all streets in the neighborhood

Street map showing location of Duke Energy's planned tree-trimming work to be doen in December or January

The red lines show where Duke Energy plans to trim trees in December or January. Click on the map to make it big enough to read (you may need to click twice).

Duke Energy is planning to trim trees on most streets in College Hill during UNCG’s winter break. The red lines on the map above show where they’ll be working: South Mendenhall Street between Walker and Oakland avenues, Walker Avenue, Springdale Court, Morehead, McGee, Joyner, Jackson, Fulton and Cedar streets.

Duke Energy is willing to host a community meeting with their arborist between October 31 and November 10. If you would be interested in attending such a meeting, please let me know through the comments, and we’ll work with the city and Duke to get it scheduled.

Posted in Cedar Street, Duke Energy, Fulton Street, Jackson Street, Joyner Street, McGee Street, Mendenhall Street, Morehead Street, Oakland Avenue, Spring Garden Street, Springdale Court, Trees, Walker Avenue | 3 Comments

College Hill’s priciest rental is still empty after four months, plus news of the mattress store, the T-shirts and more pot busts

four college hill residents posing at festival

Neighborhood association volunteers /T-shirt salespeople at Sunday’s Tate Street Festival, from left: Clara Kelly, Arlen Nicholls, David Hemm and Lynn Gagnier. We’re now sold out of medium-size shirts. L and XL are still available. Click here for details. And click here to tell us you want one.

817 rankin place, seen from the streetCollege Hill’s one executive-type rental property has now been on the market for four months. 817 Rankin Place, the relatively new house built in 2005, is going for $2,000 per month with a $2,000 deposit. “Qualifications include credit score over 600, verified income of 3 and 1/2 times the rent monthly, and no prior evictions. No co-signers.” Don’t have to worry about that one turning into a frat house. …

The mattress store at Spring Garden and Mendenhall doesn’t seem to be open any more. A sign has been on the door for months directing customers to its other location, the gloriously named Al Sedgefield’s Discount World of Sleep, down Spring Garden Street on the other side of UNCG. … Are you sure you don’t need an office in College Hill? The Presbyterian Church of the Covenant still has one available. …

Coming attractions: The Havana Cuba All-Stars, Carolina Theatre, Sunday September 25; opening Thursday September 29, UNCG Theatre presents Caroline or Change, book and lyrics by Tony Kushner, Taylor Theatre; “Basie Meets the Duke,” a performance by the two UNCG jazz ensembles, Friday October 7, in the Recital Hall of the Music Building.

Current inventory at the Little Free Library at College Place UMC includes The World According to Garp, War and Remembrance and The History of Film. The kids’ collection features a Calvin and Hobbes anthology. If you have a book or two you’d like to give away, that’s the place to leave them. …

Neighborhood Watch note: Pot busts

The Greensboro police say they’re not making a special effort to make marijuana arrests, but pot smokers are just making it too easy. In the last three months, there have been five pot arrests in College Hill, 12 more on campus and at least 15 in other neighborhoods near UNCG.

In almost all cases, people were stopped for traffic violations or other matters and police smelled marijuana. The state Supreme Court has ruled that the smell of marijuana is probable cause for searching a vehicle, so that’s all it takes. If you smoke weed, don’t do it while driving or walking around in public. The police aren’t going to ignore it.

Posted in Businesses, College Hill Neighborhood Association, College Place UMC, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, Public Safety, Rankin Place, Real Estate, Spring Garden Street, Tate Street, UNCG, UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tate Street news: UNCG buys the former Addams bookstore

the building as seen from tate street

326 South Tate Street: Originally a movie theatre, then a bookstore, and soon a theatre crafts space for the College of Visual and Performing Arts at UNCG

The former Addams bookstore on Tate Street has been bought by UNCG. The university plans for the College of Visual and Performing Arts to use it for theatre crafts, including the production of costumes and props for stage productions.

Dr. Peter Alexander, dean of the college, said the building will not be used for performances. It will replace a building on campus that will be torn down for a new building for the School of Nursing.

“It’s a great location for us,” he said this morning in a telephone conversation. The theatre program’s two performance spaces, UNCG Auditorium and Taylor Theatre, are a block away on Tate Street.

“It will take quite a bit of renovation, but the bones of the building are good.”

The building drew attention from a variety of businesses, said Brian Burnham, the agent for the seller. Various buyers’ interests included using it as a night club, music venue or pool hall, but the seller wasn’t interested in such a use.

“The owner wasn’t willing to do that to the neighborhood,” Burnham said.

The bookstore closed in February 2014, a victim of the shift of book sales from stores to the internet. The building was built in 1938 as a movie theatre. It anchors the Tate Street business district at the north end and sits almost on top of the property line it shares with the house at 324 Tate Street.

Posted in Businesses, Tate Street, UNCG, UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts | 2 Comments

Greensboro College checks out of its ‘inn’ on Market Street; owner plans to rent the rooms to students, young professionals

empty parking lot at what used to be inn at greensboro college

The Inn at Greensboro College is no longer needed, the college says.

Greensboro College is no longer housing students at the Inn at Greensboro College, the former motel on Market Street at Mendenhall.

Spokesman Lex Alexander said the college no longer needs the facility to accommodate all of its students who want to live on campus. The college’s lease on the building will expire in November.

The building’s owner, Abdul Abu-Hashem, is making maintenance repairs and preparing to rent the apartments to students and possibly young professionals. He hopes to begin advertising for new tenants in October, he said in a telephone conversation today.

“We’re going to make it as good as it was, even better,” he said.

Abu-Hashem operates several other apartment buildings in Greensboro and formerly owned the two Big City Pizza and Subs restaurants on Market Street downtown and Spring Garden Street west of the UNCG campus (updated per the Business Journal report cited in a comment below).

The college bought the 61-unit building in 2002 as part of an ambitious expansion plan. At the time the motel had a reputation as a fleabag occupied by drug dealers and prostitutes. The college’s purchase and extensive renovation removed a chronic problem and eyesore for College Hill and Westerwood.

Greensboro College suffered a financial crisis in 2009; its debt-reduction efforts included selling the building in 2011 to Abdul Brothers Investments. The college has leased the building since then. Last year, Abdul transferred ownership to another of his companies, Dalen Investment Group.

Posted in Greensboro College, Market Street, Mendenhall Street | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Notes: After Gateway party at Jake’s Billiards on September 17, plus our new polling place and historic preservation’s impact

flyer for After Gateway fundraiser, Saturday Sept. 17 at Jake's Billiards

If you don’t know After Gateway, it’s a nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the lives of adults with multiple and/or severe developmental disabilities. It’s located at the Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. Their annual fund-raiser on September 17 deserves our support. Click on the flyer for more information about the event at Jake’s Billiards or click here for information about After Gateway.  …

If you haven’t gotten the word yet from the county Board of Elections, College Hill has a new polling place again. Beginning with the November 8 elections, it will move back to the Reynolds Center, the former YMCA at Tate and Market streets now owned by Greensboro College. That means voting no longer requires us to play Frogger with the traffic on Washington Street to get to the school administration building from its parking lot across the street. …

Impact of historic preservation

The city Planning Department has put out a report on the impact of historic preservation in Greensboro. “One of the things that make Greensboro such a great place is our neighborhoods.  Our older ones especially tell wonderful stories about life at different points in our history,” the report says. Highlights:

  • Property values in College Hill rose 357 percent from 1980 to 2012; in Fisher Park, 316 percent; and in Aycock, 272 percent.
  • Homeowners and other property owners invested $18 million in improvements in the three local historic districts from 2006-15. (More than 75 percent of the spending was in Fisher Park.)
  • Greensboro has three locally designated historic districts, 12 districts on the National Register of Historic Places, Guilford Courthouse National Military Park, a National Historic Landmark (Blandwood Mansion), and 44 individual properties on the National Register.
Posted in City Government, Elections, Events, Greensboro College, Historic Preservation, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant | Tagged | Leave a comment

An especially lively month ahead for the arts in College Hill, including 17 Days art and music and the Tate Street Festival

September calendar of events in College HillGreensboro’s annual 17 Days arts festival begins on Friday September 9 with the opening of the 76th National Folk Festival. It continues through Sunday September 25. Five festival events are scheduled in College Hill:

  • Collage 2016
    Saturday September 10, 7:30 p.m., UNCG Auditorium on Tate Street
    A concert to kick off the academic year’s “War and Peace Imagined” collaboration within the UNCG School of Music, Theatre and Dance.

  • Capture/Rapture/Rupture” Reception
    Wednesday September 14, 6 p.m., Greensboro College, Cowan Art Building
    An exhibit focusing on imagery of vanishing species of birds, simians and higher-order species that can be seen as “like us.” The exhibit will be on display during regular gallery hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m.-noon Saturdays through Oct. 14. Admission is free.

  • Artist Talk: Hank Willis Thomas
    Thursday September 15, 7 p.m., Weatherspoon Art Museum
    Visiting Artist Hank Willis Thomas will discuss his exhibit Unbranded: A Century of White Women, 1915-2015, and place the series in the context of his other projects that address race and social action. The talk is free but ticketed.

  • Brass Roots Trio
    Friday September 16, 7:30 p.m., Greensboro College, Gail Brower Huggins Performance Center
    The Brass Roots Trio — trumpet, French horn and piano — create symphonic sounds that melt into sultry jazz.

  • Tate Street Festival
    Sunday September 18, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m., Tate Street Business District
    Music, food and more than 60 vendors, selling jewelry, painting, photography, sculpture, pottery, organic health and beauty products, handmade clothing, hats, fine crafts, vintage clothing and furniture, stained glass and unique works of art. And the official College Hill T-shirt.

Click here for the full September calendar page.

Don’t forget the regular Tuesday events

  • In*Spire Meditation group
    Tuesdays, noon, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant, 501 South Mendenhall Street, in the Sanctuary. The meditation period is less than an hour and is open to the public.
  • Noon at the ‘Spoon
    Second Tuesday each month, Weatherspoon Art Museum, Spring Garden Street at Tate Street, a 20-minute exploration of a new exhibition. This month: the WAM sculpture garden.
  • Taco Tuesday Beginners Bike Ride
    Tuesdays, rolling at 6:30 p.m., ReCycles, 908-A Spring Garden Street
    A social ride, an opportunity to meet new riders who wish to get outside and maybe work up to longer rides over the course of the summer. Initially, the ride will be averaging around 6-10 miles, no-drop, at a pace averaging around 10+, then building through the summer.  Afterward, the Bandito Burrito Food Truck is at South Mendenhall and Spring Garden on Tuesdays.
Posted in Events, Greensboro College, Tate Street, UNCG, UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts, Weatherspoon Art Museum | Leave a comment