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please help: Gastonia historic district threatened

Residents of Gastonia, North Carolina - a beautiful community just a few miles north of the NC/SC border, just west of Charlotte and not far from Arts & Crafts center Asheville - are very scared that their showcase historic district is in immediate danger of being partially demolished and almost totally homogenized by real estate developers:

I live in a historic home, in a historic district, adjacent to a historic downtown. While many homes and buildings are in disrepair, some to the point of severe deterioration, I have always, and will always feel that they are worth saving. And I need HELP!

Gastonia's City Council has recently voted to demolish 3 city-owned buildings on our Historic Main Street, including a theatre that was built around the turn of the century and an old Woolworth's, even though there were multiple offers to purchase and rehab them. Contrary to what the City Manager, Mayor and Coucilmembers say, there are multiple buildings that have just been renovated, or are about to be.  These buildings are right in the middle of the block, sharing walls with buildings that are currently under rehab!  Our downtown is on the National Register, and yet none of the preservation societies are able to help.  If any one knows of any way to help stop this travesty, please post here!

Here are the links to relevant articles!  Our small paper is doing a great job of reporting this! 1 2 3 4 5

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