A local investor has acquired the 62-year-old Crawford House on Country Club Drive for $1.1 million, saving the architecturally significant structure from the wrecking ball.
In a deal that closed Wednesday, the buyer—identified only as Crawford House, LLC—acquired the Westdale home and the 1.5-acre lot on which it sits from a group of developers, who bought it earlier this spring for $800,000 and had planned to tear it down and subdivide the lot for redevelopment.
Plans for the 4,000-square-foot home, which is a classic example of mid-century modern architecture, remain unclear at this point since the buyer wants to remain anonymous and the attorney listed on the act of sale, Brett Brinson, did not return calls and emails seeking comment.
But the local preservation group that launched the effort to save the home from demolition says they have been assured the new owner wants to preserve the home and restore it.
“Preserve Louisiana is grateful the Crawford House will remain, as it should, considering its significant architectural and historical significance,” says Preserve Louisiana Executive Director Fairleigh Jackson. “This is an example of why we, and our communities, need to be proactive.”
The Crawford House is significant both because of who designed it, internationally renowned architect Wahl Snyder, and who lived there—local architect Hamilton Crawford, who built thousands of tract houses throughout the region during the booming post-war years. It has been featured in national publications for its classic, Mid-Century modern features, but was never registered as a local or federal historic landmark.
Jackson says she is in discussions with the new owner, whom she declines to identify, about how to protect the home moving forward. But she says the take away from the whole experience is to protect properties before they’re in danger of being demolished.
“It’s key we use designations such as local landmark or national register listings to protect valuable historic assets in our community,” she says.
To read the Stephanie Riegel column that first put this issue in the spotlight, click here.