Community invited to give input on restoration of downtown building
Published 8:58 am Friday, May 6, 2016
Thanks to the vision of a local resident to restore a downtown building, community members now have the opportunity to be a part of its future.
Ashley White purchased the two-story building located at 524 E. Elk Ave. between Reece’s Pieces and Crows Nest with the idea of creating loft apartments upstairs and an eatery downstairs.
“I’d like to get a community response on what everyone would like to see there, perhaps a local restaurant, brewery, or bakery — something casual,” she said.
Though she said the building is in bad shape and has needed some love for quite a while, she believes the right concept downstairs and a chic design upstairs may be just the ingredients for what she’s calling “Project 524.”
“I’ve been wanting to invest in something for a while and to do something different, so I’ve been looking at real estate opportunities and that kind of popped up and thought it would be neat to get started there,” she explained.
She welcomes ideas and has set up accounts to receive input. Community members may submit ideas on Instagram under the tag project_524 or via email at email@example.com.
“I’m from Elizabethton and am interested in ideas from folks that live here,” she said.
The building is 90 feet long and 25 feet wide, she said, and it will need roof repair before other remodeling can really begin.
She said she would consider leasing the downstairs to someone with a concept for a relaxed environment that would mesh well with having four or five loft apartments above it.
According to a directory from the late 1950s, the building was occupied by Walker’s OK Barbershop and later by the Downtown Restaurant.
She described her vision for the first level on Instagram as a “chill environment to come and sit, grab a coffee and dessert or enjoy a burger with some nice local craft beer” as well as a “fast, casual dining experience with open windows in the summer for a nice relaxing day or just a drop by pit stop.”