Last night John McPheeters left a lengthy comment offering some clarifications regarding my post about their recent demolitions. First, I was incorrect in showing the gravel lot east of their main building as being owned by Bowood. It is owned by the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge, which is located further east on the same block. Second, Bowood does not intend to demolish 4621 Washington, the stone bay fronted home that is part of a row of alternating matching houses.
This is a big relief, as demolition of this house or any additional homes in this magnificant row would be devastating. McPheeters indicated that he had recently installed a new roof on the building, restored the Jefferson window over the porch, and that renovations would continue s "funds are available". It would be helpful though to board-up the missing windows on the second floor to keep blowing rain out of the house. The windowless look makes the house look like a forlorn Blairmont property waiting for the final curtain call.
McPheeters also mentioned that new presidential development would eventually occur on the north side of Washington on the vacant lots. This is also a good sign as it seemed fairly extreme to expand the Bowood business both north and south. He mentioned that the City condemned 4569 Washington after a partial collapse of the west wall, but I find it interesting that Bowood's main building on Olive was also "condemned for demolition" by the City in January 2005, yet they moved forward with renovation. McPheeters ended his comments with excuses for demolishing 4608 Washington, saying that the house was "severely compromised by neglect over the decades and had become a hazard to life". Somehow I find this to be a bit of an overstatement, as I have seen homes in far worse shape renovated, including farther east on the same block.