Detroit Legal News-Little Rock
Detroit Legal News-Little Rock
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Creator: Detroit Legal News
Subjects: Historic Designation
Description: Article noting the enactment of the ordinance creating the Little Rock Historic District, and discussing its architectural features.
Date: February 26, 1983
Original Format: Newspaper Clipping
Rights Management: Detroit Legal News
Contributing Institution: Array
Contributor: Brett Boor
Transcript: Detroit Legal News, Friday, Feb. 26, 1993
Notice of Enactment of Ordinance
To: The citizens of Detroit, Michigan
On February 17, 1993, the City Council adopted the following Ordinance:
ORDINANCE NO.4-93 TO PROVIDE ESTABLISHMENT OF LITTLE ROCK CHURCH HISTORIC DISTRICT
An ordinance to amend Chapter 25, Article 2, of the 1984 Detroit City Code by adding Section 25-2-123 to provide for the establishment of the Little Rock Church HIstoric District.
It is hereby ordained by the people of the city of Detroit:
Section 1, Chapter 25, Article 2, of the Detroit City Code be amended by adding Section 25-2-123 as follows:
(a) A historic district to be known as Little Rock Church HIstoric District is hereby established in accordance with the provisions of this Article.
(b) This HIstoric District designation is herby certified as being consistent with the Detroit Master Plan
(c) The boundaries of Little Rock Church Historic District are as shown on the map on file in the office of the City Clerk, and shall be ; on the south, the south boundary, extended east and west, of Lot 68 of Frazer & McLaughlin's Subdivision, Liber 14, Page 29 Plats; on the west, the centerline of Woodward Avenue; on the north the centerline of Josephine Avenue; and on the east the centerline of the north-south alley lying east of and parallel to Woodward. (Legal descripton: Lot 68 of Frazer & McLaughlin's Subdivision, Liber 14 Page 29 Plats.)
(d) The design treatment level of the Little Rock Church HIstoric District shall be rehabilitation, as provided for in Section 25-2-2.
(e) The defined elements of design as provided for in Section 25-2-2 shall be as follows:
(1) Height. The sanctuary is a tall single story on a high basement, flanked on the north by the one (1) story chapel; the adjoining church house structure is two (2) stories tall above the basement; the tower standing at the intersection of sanctuary and church house is the tallest element of the complex. All structures have pitched roofs creating attics.
(2) Proportion of buildings' front facades. The west facing facade of the sanctuary is taller than wide; the Josephine frontage is wider than tall. Incorporating both the front facade of the church house and the side of the sanctuary.
(3) Proportion of openings within the facade. All windows are taller than wide; many door openings contain pairs of doors, and are therefore approximately as wide as tall. Openings range from thirty-five (35) to forty (40) percent of the wall surface of the various facades.
(4) Rhythm of solids to voids in front facades. Voids in the sanctuary facade are symmetrical as is the void in the adjoining chapel facade. Voids are generally asymmetrical but vertically aligned in the front facade of the church house facing Josephine. Voids in the tower are very small in scale except for the major openings at the top.
(5) Rhythm of spacing of buildings on streets. No rhythm is established by this single complex.
(6) Rhythm of entrance and/or porch projections. No rhythm is established by this single complex.
(7) Relationship of materials. The dominant material is gray limestone. Gray brick is used for the alley facade; slate for the roof. Glass is a major element, particularly of the sanctuary portion of the church complex. Copper is present as an element in roofing, gutters, and downspouts; other metal occurs in door and window frames. Wood is used for doors.
(8) Relationship of textures. The major texture is the smooth and flat stone in mortar. The major textural contrast with the mortar-set stone is with the smooth sheets of glass or glass substitutes in the windows. Wooden doors provide smooth contrasting surfaces. The slate of the sanctuary roof provides a low relief texture. Brick laid in mortar is the major texture of the rear facade.
(9) Relationship of colors. The major color is the gray of the limestone; the slate roof on the sanctuary ranges from purple to gray-green. Dark metal storm window frames and wood finish doors provide minor color contrast. At the rear is found the gray of the brick.
(10) Relationship of architectural details. Details on the complex are architectronic in character and in the vocabulary of the modern Gothic and Tudor styles. Glazing bars, mullions and muntins are the major details of the windows.
(11) Relationship of roof shapes. Gabled roofs are the major form in the District. The complex has some flat roofs, particularly abutting the sanctuary.
(12) Walls of continuity. The complex does not form any significant walls of continuity.
(13) Relationship of significant landscape features and surface treatments. The "L" shaped complex is set to the south on the site, creating a lawn of grass turf between the chapel and Josephine Avenue. Concrete sidewalks exist on Woodward and Josephine. THere are concrete walks leading to the various entrances. There is a paved alley at the rear. Some foundation plantings exist.
(14) Relationship of open space to structure. The major open space is the lawn of grass turf lying between the chapel and Josephine. The complex abuts the building to the south, and stands at the building line along the alley; the sanctuary facade is nearly at the Woodward Avenue building line. the Historic District exists in an area rich in churches and other institutions, and this portion of Woodward Avenue is notable for the repeated occurrence of large open spaces associate with institutional buildings.
(15) Scale of facades and facade elements. The sanctuary facade is large in scale with large scale architectural elements which are sculptural in character as well as smaller scale decorative sculpture. The church house facade facing Josephine is more modest in scale and its facade elements more balanced so that an almost domestic scale is suggested.
(16) Directional expression of front elevation. The various facades are generally horizontal in expression, except the Woodward facade of the sanctuary which is vertical due to the several vertical elements.
(17) Rhythm of building setbacks. There is no rhythm of setbacks established.
(18) Relationship of lot coverages. Eighty (80) percent of the area of the lot is built upon. The only vacant space belongs to the church and is located in front (west) of the Woodward facade and continues around to the north elevation along Josephine.
(19) Degree of complexity within the facade. The facades are somewhat complex; the Woodward facade of the sanctuary depends largely on massing for effect, with sculpture emphasizing the architectural elements. The effect of the complex lies in its materials and imassing more than complex design.
(20) Orientation, vistas, overviews. Situated on a corner, with an open space beside it, the church forms one (1) of a series of landmark structures on Woodward. The complex is clearly oriented toward the corner of Woodward and Josephine with the sanctuary at the south lot line, and the tower at the intersection of those two (2) elements visible mainly from the diagonal vantage point at the corner.
(21) Symmetric or asymmetric appearance. The Woodward facade of the sanctuary is symmetrical, all other facades of the church complex are asymmetrical.
(22) General environmental character. The church complex forms a landmark quality structure on a major thoroughfare containing a number of such structures nearby. The district as a whole has and shares a highly urban character as part of the streetscape of a major thoroughfare.
Section 2. All ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict herewith be and the same are herewith repealed.
Section 3. This ordinance is declared necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health, safety, and welfare of the people of the City of Detroit, and is hereby given immediate effect.
(J.C.C.P.) January 27, 1993
Passed February 17, 1993
Approved February 24, 1993
Published February 26, 1993
Effective February 26, 1993
James H. Bradley