Knox Heritage (ca 1888) Home Recieves LEED Certification

Knox Heritage Green House, Fort Sanders, Knoxville, February 2011

This will be the first in a series of posts centered in the Fort Sanders area. The densest populated area in east Tennessee, the neighborhood is known for its student housing and its proximity to the University of Tennessee campus. It is also home to many Victorian era structures in various states of beauty and decay. James Agee lived in this neighborhood, though sadly the home he remembered as he wrote A Death in the Family was destroyed in favor of bland apartments for students.

View of the Knoxville Museum of Art from the Green House

That was the old way of doing business in Knoxville. In this new era (I’m feeling optimistic today) we preserve homes and even make them better. Such is the case with the Victorian Home restored by Knox Heritage, located at 1011 Victorian Way (formerly 1011 Laurel Avenue, just off Eleventh Street) and dubbed the Green House. Not only was it returned to its original grandeur, it was built with energy efficiency and sustainability in mind, demonstrating that you can have old without the sins of the fathers. In this case, the home comes equipped with two solar power devices, one for heating water and one for generating electricity. The home is now being offered for sale.

View of the former Eleventh Street Coffee House (great coffee!) from the Green House

Other homes in the area are also in various states of restoration, while many languish and as recently as this past year, some are still being destroyed. If you are interested in older homes, I’d encourage you to take a stroll through Fort Sanders. Maybe you’ll be inspired to take on a (large and expensive, but very loving) project. If that is out of your means or capabilities, maybe you’d like to join Knox Heritage and support their work. In the meantime, over the next few days, I’ll give you a peak at some of the sites in the neighborhood.

Knox Heritage “Green House,” Fort Sanders, Knoxville, February 2011