More of Atlanta’s history erased with Tuxedo home demolition

By Maria Saporta

It’s so sad to see a historic home demolished – especially without a full vetting of all possible options to save it.

That was the case with the “Maddox House” designed by famous Atlanta architect Phillip Trammel Shutze at 3665 Tuxedo Road.

Tuxedo demolition

Shutze-designed house turned to rubble on Feb. 3 (Photo: engaged reader)

The relatively new owner of the house – Dallas Clement, the CFO of Cox Enterprises, said he would explore possible solutions to save the most historic elements of the house.

And less than 10 days later, the house was turned into rubble.

Why this turned out the way it did is multi-fold.

First, the city has work to do to make sure its historic buildings and neighborhoods are protected.

Second, the architectural community needs to have a bias towards adaptive reuse, preservation and conservation. Instead, the original architect – Bill Harrison of Harrison Design – recommended tearing down the house and designing a brand new house.

Tuxedo house all gone

A few days after Feb. 3, the house is virtually all gone (Photo by Maria Saporta)

Dallas and Anna Clement would have been better served if Harrison had proposed a design that would have incorporated the Shutze house. Or Harrison could have proposed that the Clements buy a vacant property (ironically there’s one across the street) so that the Shutze house could have been saved.

The design also calls for the removal of 61 trees, another issue that Atlanta needs to address. We need to take every step we can to preserve our tree canopy. Having one homeowner be able to remove 61 trees so his family can have a grandiose house with a pool seems unfortunate at best.

The loss of another Shutze residence in Atlanta once again exposes our vulnerabilities of not being able to save the structures that need to be preserved.

Tuxedo home

A view of the Tuxedo house on the hill through the trees (Photo by Maria Saporta)

Tuxedo home

The front of the Shute-designed house on Tuxedo Road in Buckhead (Photo by Maria Saporta)

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.

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