Monday, September 13, 2010

Roger McGuire Green, Asheville

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It was a gorgeous late summer day over this past weekend and we headed off downtown to take in the scenery.  One of our favorite buildings downtown is the Art Deco City Hall building and the adjacent McGuire Green, part of Pack Square Park. Asheville has more Art Deco style buildings than any other Eastern city except for Miami.

This year, downtown Asheville's historic Pack Square has transformed into a beautiful public park with 6.5 acres of public space for visitors to relax and linger. In addition to the Roger McGuire Green in front of City Hall and the County Building, the new park has a large open green space on a slope overlooking the main stage, three water features and original, large-scale art by regional artists. There are many seating areas surrounded by native trees and shrubs.

This water feature (with my shadow on it) starts up at Pack Square and flows downhill to become part of the main fountain.  Kids like to run down in it. At the base of the fountain sits the main stage in front of City Hall.

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The Asheville City Building is a colorful, massive and eclectic Art Deco masterpiece. Douglas D. Ellington, an architect who came to Asheville in the mid-1920s, designed the eight-story building, which was completed in 1928. Ellington stated that the design was "an evolution of the desire that the contours of the building should reflect the mountain background," referring to the amazing scenery that surrounds Asheville and serves as the backdrop of City Hall.

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Ellington chose building materials that presented a "transition in color paralleling the natural clay-pink shades of the local Asheville soil." The unusual octagonal roof is covered with bands of elongated triangular terra cotta red tiles. Between the two levels of the roof are angular pink Georgia marble piers between which are precise vertical rows of ornamental green and gold feather motifs. The interior of the building is designed in a manner typical of 1920s office buildings--the central core contains public elevators and an enclosed staircase while offices lie along the perimeter of each floor. City Hall has changed little since the 1920s and still captivates residents and visitors alike with its bold and colorful style. See photo below of how it looked years ago.






The final part of the fountain is a flat area with holes in the pavement for water to shoot up about 4-5 feet. They shoot sporadically and then come up all at once. Kids love this feature and with our very hot summer, this park and fountain were abuzz with families all season long.

Hope you enjoyed the tour.  For more great posts please visit My World Tuesday, Outdoor Wednesday  and Watery Wednesday.

Please stop my my new blog Wildcat Woods Vintage Treasures and see what great finds are for sale - I hope to use this to raise money for my Rescued feral cats.

13 comments:

J Bar said...

Great shots.

Odie Langley said...

A lovely tour. I have been near Asheville many times but never actually went into the area. Now you have encouraged me to see it for myself. Thanks.
Odie

moe lauher said...

Great posting - Thanks for sharing. I going to explore your previous postings now.

Linda said...

What a great place to hang out on a nice sunny day! We have one of those types of fountains that runs into a creek and then sprays up too in the downtown near here. It is always filled with children in the summer. Great photos and I loved all the history. Thanks!

NatureFootstep said...

that is a fountain that I like. :) Great shot of it.

EG Wow said...

The building is very classy! The fountains are neat.

ewok1993 said...

fountains or any water feature just completes the whole design of things.

Luna Miranda said...

the shape of this building is indeed unique. i love how you composed the first photo.

Vintagesouthernlife said...

Great shots! Enjoyed the tour. I love Asheville. We often go there in the summer as a reprieve from the heat on the coast.

Lesley said...

I love the idea of the fountain integrating so many features of the square.

jailbreak iphone said...

great idea, i belive also. nice done!

Old Kitty said...

Oh I love art deco style architecture!! I love it!! And this is a real find! Thank you for the info and for sharing the pics of this amazing building here. What a treasure.

Oh that fountain looks like so much fun!

And I look forward to "Talk like a pirate Day"! :-)
Take care
x

Mel Cole of PA, USA said...

What a beautiful city. I like the last shot where there's fountain popping out in the holes. The scene looks inviting.

My Watery Wednesday post

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