The Mordecai Historic Preservation Committee
With strong support from neighbors, the MHPC has worked with Raleigh Historic Development Commission (RHDC) to secure an updated architectural survey of Mordecai place. The survey will provide information on the community's architecture and current home inventory, including historic and new builds. The report will be given to the RHDC to determine if Mordecai Place is eligible to pursue an Historic Overlay District (HOD). The survey will be completed in Fall 2022. To learn more about HODs and their impacts on neighborhoods, see the link to the July 20th, 2021 meeting below or visit the RHDC webpage on HODs.
According to the RHDC, "Designation of historic neighborhoods or communities as local historic districts is a successful tool for maintaining a quality of life and providing economic security. Preservation has been proven to stabilize property values and stimulate new investment in older neighborhoods."
We are looking for members of the community to help with these efforts. Please reach out to Maggie Fyfe or Shane Trahan to learn more about this initiative at email@example.com.
Committee Mission Statement:
Based on concerns expressed by neighbors, MHPC is exploring city tools for making redevelopment in Mordecai more balanced and predictable. MHPC will channel neighborhood feedback about options to preserve the interests of property owners and maintain shared aspects of the community’s natural and built environment.
Mordecai Place Neighborhood Plan:
In the early 1990’s, the Mordecai Neighborhood decided it wanted to participate in a city supported neighborhood planning process. In early 1994, the Raleigh City Council appointed 12 residents to a Mordecai Neighborhood Planning Task Force. Input was gathered from CAC residents at monthly CAC meetings as well as from “special” community meetings. From start to finish, the planning process took approximately nine months, culminating with approval of the Neighborhood Plan by City Council in September 1994.
The Mordecai Neighborhood Plan established the framework for the CAC seeking and obtaining two Neighborhood Conservation Overlay Districts (NCOD), a rezoning of part of the CAC from R-10 to Special R-6, and a listing of part of the CAC in the National Register of Historic Places. Considerable work has been done on a variety of other issues identified in the Neighborhood Plan, including pedestrian and vehicular traffic concerns. View the PDF document and maps here.
Mordecai Place Historic District
Mordecai Place, like Raleigh's other early twentieth-century suburbs, occupies land that had been part of an antebellum plantation. The original plantation house, built in the eighteenth century and heavily altered in the Greek Revival style around 1824, survives and is open to the public as a house museum at Mordecai Historic Park. The early suburb that developed on sold and subdivided plantation land features a rich variety of the architectural styles popular in the first decades of the twentieth century, including the prolific Colonial Revival houses and Craftsman bungalows as well as the romantic revival styles like Tudor Revival, Dutch Colonial Revival, Spanish Mission Revival, and Italian Renaissance Revival. There are also a few examples of a more typically rural vernacular style, the two-story, side-gabled dwelling known as an I-house. Towards the middle of the twentieth century, smaller Cape Cods and Minimal Traditional houses were built.
The neighborhood's most impressive houses, naturally, stand on large parcels nearest the grand Mordecai House. These are large Colonial Revival and Georgian houses with brick exteriors and were likely architect-designed. Bungalows are the most common house type in the neighborhood, and many feature the Craftsman detailing so strongly associated with the house type.
In 1997, the Mordecai Place was designated as a National Register of Historic Places neighborhood.
National Historic Registry documents and maps: https://www.rhdc.org/mordecai-place-historic-district-3
Neighborhood Conservation Overlay Districts (NCODs) are generally limited to lot size, front setback and heights. This is the NCOD for Mordecai according to the UDO:
b.Conservation District 2 (east of Wake Forest Road, south of Cedar Street and portions of Courtland Drive - see Mordecai Plan boundaries)
Raleigh Historic Districts
Designation of historic neighborhoods or communities as local historic districts is a successful tool for maintaining a quality of life and providing economic security. Preservation has been proven to stabilize property values and stimulate new investment in older neighborhoods.
A Raleigh Historic District is a distinctive area, a place of singular historical flavor characterized by its streets and squares, buildings and trees, architectural design and landscape features. It may be monumental or simple, residential or commercial. There are currently eight local historic districts in Raleigh: Blount Street, Boylan Heights, Capitol Square, Moore Square, Oakwood, Prince Hall, Glenwood-Brooklyn, and Oberlin Village.
Mordecai Place is not currently a Raleigh Historic District. To learn more about the different types of local historic districts and HODs visit this page: https://www.rhdc.org/preservation-services/local-historic-landmark-and-district-designation