Corner Lot Hidden Away for Decades Beneath 1904 Heights House Could Join the Commercial Crowd

A commercial realty sign was spotted this week near the 110-plus-years-old house on W. 20th St. at the northeast corner with Ashland St., per the report of a reader on the prowl with a pet. The double-decker 1904 home is actually the only piece of land at the intersection that isn’t already involved in some sort of business dealings, whether by way of conversion to retail space (like the house across Ashland hosting the Heights Florist Shop), as simple logistical support (like the parking lot across W. 20th), or as part of higher commercial aspirations (as demonstrated by the St. Joseph medical midrise, diagonally across). CRBE, meanwhile, has its own tentative suggestions of what could be done with the .64-acre property, which is being marketed for ground lease:


The spot is one block over from the Nicholson St. intersection straddled by those under-redevelopment Heights Waterworks properties.

Images: Swamplot inbox (photo), CBRE (sample site plan)

W. 20th, East of Waterworks

18 Comment

  • Everything about this is awful.

  • Looks like the house is doomed. Unless someone buys this for residential (the house needs a LOT of work), the structure as is pretty much can’t be used for commercial unless they find someone will to lease them the parking spaces they’ll need.

    But hey, at least the “don’t park in front of my house” crowd will be happy that this 3000 s.f. building will have around 50 off-street parking spaces. Given the amount of parking, they’re probably targeting restaurant/bar tenants.

  • That nice old house will make a great surface lot, or maybe even a CVS, if we’re lucky

  • Let us know when the city issues demo permit. I’ve got a bet on how many cats run outta that place after Komatsu bites into that puppy.

  • This corner is screaming for a Mattress Firm.

  • I actually wish I had the money to get that house back in order. Great location for a coffee house or something downstairs with offices above.

  • Isn’t that a lovely photo? of a great house and a great tree.

  • Shame. That house is spectacular. That lot is spectacular. Why can’t this city do anything right .

  • …what a waste of a fine old house! It may have seen better days, but it’s still better than more stip mall crap.

  • Ah, I used to drive by this house all the time and dream about fixing it up. Looked like it was in disrepair then and that was almost ten years ago.

    It’s a shame, but I can’t imagine anyone rehabbing it.

  • It’s heartbreaking! I’ve lived in the Heights since 1993 and I had a dream of purchasing and rehabbing but never had the $$. This beautiful historic home will be missed, and the trees will be destroyed as well. As our President says – “SAD”!

  • This house has some wonderful history. It was originally a one story that was raised up by cranes and the ground level story was built underneath. During WW One, they would roll up the rugs and host dances for the soldiers. It was the home of my great grandparents who lived there with their children when they moved from PA. My two spinster Great Aunts lived there all their lives. It broke the hearts of the family when it had to be sold but no one had the means to buy and restore it. I wanted to share for those of you that had posted the kind comments.

  • Adam: “Shame. That house is spectacular. That lot is spectacular. Why can’t this city do anything right .”
    You’re welcome to buy it, and keep it as a house. Go for it. You’ll be pretty popular on this site if you do.

  • Cody?! You should save this beautiful house. God knows you have the resources and contacts to do it. Come on!

  • @Cody:
    “You’re welcome to buy it, and keep it as a house. Go for it. You’ll be pretty popular on this site if you do.”
    I love these arguments. The jist is: if you can’t (or don’t want to) buy it and rehab it yourself, you should not ever whine about it. So very clever!

  • @I’m Impressed: I think the argument is that without some way to take action, whining is just noise. Also, it’s easy to spend someone else’s money.

  • Thank you, Ms Lauckner, for your update on the history of the house and sale. Wishing you and your family the best. I walked my dog past the house for years and waved and exchanged pleasantries with the older woman; I even have a couple of little keepsakes from the garage sale.

    As for those who believe that only the wealthy have a right to speak and the everyone else should shut up, may Karma have its way with you.

    The site has more information on the purchaser of 347 W. 20th. It’s public information and easily accessible.

  • Is there any way someone can take a tour of this house? I’ve passed by this house countless times as a child and I’ve always wondered what it looked like inside due to the fact that it’s so old. I love old houses and I’m currently studying the Heights area history. If anyone might now how to visit this home without legal action being taken. Let me know!