Historic downtown building to be saved - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Historic downtown building to be saved

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) -

Historic Augusta, Inc. is pleased to announce that during the meeting of the Augusta Historic Preservation Commission on Thursday, December 19, 2013 an architectural design for a new Information Technology Building (IT Building) was presented and approved that is in keeping with the guidelines of the Downtown Augusta Historic District.  At the same time, the last remaining 19th Century court building on the block will also be preserved.  Plans were approved after two months of discussions and negotiations between city officials, Virgo Gambill Architects, the project designers, members of the Augusta Historic Preservation Commission and representatives of Historic Augusta, Inc.

The two-story 20,000 square foot IT Building will be constructed on the east side of the present Municipal Building, near Greene Street, and will be a modern building with traditional characteristics. Its brick and metal surfaces will compliment the existing architecture that surrounds it, while providing all the needs of Augusta's important 21st Century IT Department.

The IT Department is currently housed along with the city's print shop in a building that began as county offices constructed in the mid-19th Century.  This building has had several incongruous additions that obscure the original structure's Greek Revival simplicity.  Once the IT Building is completed, it was agreed that the additions can be removed, leaving the original symmetrical one-story building intact for a future use that will be determined at a later time.

The adjacent building, currently housing the city's planning department, will also be preserved.  Built in 1869, the Greek Revival Temple is the oldest existing building in Georgia constructed as a synagogue. Current plans call for the offices now located there to be relocated into the Municipal Building following its renovation.  Demolition of the synagogue building was never part of the IT Building plan that was presented, and it's future use will also be determined at a future time.  

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