Advertisement
  1. News

Habitat for Humanity moves historic home to refurbish it for new family

The Henry-Bryan house, built in 1903, was moved from Fourth Avenue NE to another property in St. Petersburg late Thursday.
Published Oct. 25, 2013

ST. PETERSBURG — They're in the business of starting from scratch.

Sometimes, when it doesn't suit their needs, Habitat for Humanity will even tear a house down.

But the blue, boarded-up, century-old structure they hauled from Fourth Avenue on Thursday night was a first for the nonprofit's Pinellas County branch: an old home they'll make new for a family in need.

The house needs major renovations. New floors, roofing, wind defenses and updated wiring will need to be installed before the home meets Habitat standards.

But for the family that will move there, it's a chance to be part of something truly special.

"To get a house with so much history — it's really just a blessing, " potential homeowner Stephania Everett, 32, said.

Late Thursday night, workers started moving the Henry-Bryan House from 146 Fourth Ave. NE to its new location at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street and 13th Avenue S. The hours-long journey was scheduled for when traffic would be thin.

Built in 1903, the house was a construction office in the 2000s and a dental practice before that.

About nine months ago, St. Petersburg condominium developer JMC Communities bought land for a new development. Instead of tearing down the Queen Anne-style home, they reached out to Habitat.

"When we purchased the property, we knew that there was this historic home there," JMC Communities CEO Michael Cheezem said. "We certainly wanted to preserve it, and the city also wanted it preserved."

The Henry-Bryan home will need months of renovations before the Everett family can move in.

Habitat for Humanity's homes must meet standards to ensure its low-income homeowners pay the lowest possible insurance rates. That means making sure homes are sustainable, energy efficient and made to mitigate wind damage, Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas County's chief operating officer Ron Spoor said.

In a new home, those features might come standard, so renovations aren't necessarily cheaper than building new. That's why in some cases, Habitat even demolishes houses that stand on donated land.

"Moving a historic home, and for Habitat to partner with a sponsor in its renovation, is fairly unique," Spoor said.

But in this case, Spoor said, everything came together —an owner willing to donate, a piece of land the home could be trucked to and a family eager to stay in their neighborhood while moving to a home of their own.

The Everetts moved from Tampa to St. Petersburg several months ago when Bradford Everett, 30, a missionary with the campus ministry Intervarsity, took a post at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Stephania, a student, still commutes to Tampa for night classes and takes care of their 3-year-old son, Timothy, during the day.

Without Habitat for Humanity, Stephania said, they wouldn't be able to afford a home. They also wanted to stay in the neighborhood.

"We feel called to that city, that neighborhood, to be a positive influence and a positive light to the community," Stephania said.

That's why they were a perfect fit for the Henry-Bryan home. Habitat for Humanity liked the idea of refurbishing a home to help revitalize the community.

"We just feel like there's so much that we can do in the community with a house like that," Stephania said. "It's so nice for our doors to be open."

Claire Wiseman can be reached at (727)-893-8804 or cwiseman@tampabay.com. On Twitter: @clairelwiseman

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Paul Skalnik in a 1987 Pinellas County Sheriff's Office booking mug. He played a pivotal rule in the death row sentences of multiple inmates.
    From the archives: The Tampa Bay Times has covered Paul Skalnik, the subject of ProPublica and New York Times story, since 1987.
  2. St. Petersburg police said they arrested Jesse Millis-Dwyer after Homeland Security detected him uploading a sexually explicit photo of a 12-year-old girl to a Russian photo-sharing site. St. Pete
    Police said he uploaded photo to Russian picture-sharing site
  3. This photo taken from video provided by WEAR-TV shows emergency responders near the Naval Air Base Station in Pensacola, Fla., Friday, Dec. 6, 2019.  The US Navy is confirming that an active shooter and one other person are dead after gunfire at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola. Area hospital representatives tell The Associated Press that at least 11 people were hospitalized. The base remains locked down amid a huge law enforcement response.   (WEAR-TV via AP) AP
    Family members on Saturday identified one of the victims as a 23-year-old recent graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy who alerted first responders to where the shooter was even after he had been shot...
  4. Lawanda Ravoira, DPA, president & CEO, Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center, said girls are subject to an alarming rate of violence and bullying and are not getting the help they need from counseling and other social services. CHRISTOPHER O'DONNELL  |  Times
    Leader of Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center comes to Tampa to warn of “unchecked crisis” of violence and victimization of middle and high school girls.
  5. This rendering shows Scientology's proposed L. Ron Hubbard Hall, a 3,600-seat auditorium with an all-glass facade at the corner of Garden Avenue and Court Street in downtown Clearwater. [Courtesy City of Clearwater]
    Plans for L. Ron Hubbard Hall go back 26 years. If constructed, it would have more seats than Clearwater’s Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  6. Classic Reflections Carriages is offering carriage rides starting at 6 p.m. Dec. 19-21 throughout downtown Brooksville. Reservations are made in person on each event date, starting at 4 p.m., in front of the historic courthouse. Brooksville Main Street
    Holiday events in Pasco and Hernando counties
  7. A huge number of homes owned by Baby Boomers will sell in the next 20 years. How will the trend affect the Florida housing market? CAMERON GILLIE  |  NAPLES DAILY NEWS
    The enormous generation born between 1946 and 1964 owns about 40 percent of the homes across the country.
  8. A Brinks security guard was shot during a robbery attempt at a GTE Financial credit union in Brandon Friday morning. TONY MARRERO  |  Times
    Deputies thought they had the suspect pinned down at the Bridgeport Apartments, but he fled.
  9. Check tampabay.com for the latest breaking news and updates. Tampa Bay Times
    The motorcycle was headed south on Dale Mabry, while the northbound bus was making a turn.
  10. Police are seen outside a home at 5342 22nd Ave. N Friday in St. Petersburg. Stanley Jones, inset, is accused of stabbing two women at 22nd Avenue North and 53rd Street. One woman died from her injuries and the other was hospitalized. [URSO, CHRIS | Tampa Bay Times] CHRIS URSO | Times; St. Petersburg Police Department
    Police arrested Stanley Jones just after the stabbing Friday on 22nd Avenue N.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement