Changing Face of West Main: Demolition on Vinegar Hill

Here are a few photos from the recent demolition of the former Russell Mooney Oldsmobile showroom and the adjacent building which was the original Russell Mooney dealership as well as a Texaco station.  More recently it was home to Random Row Books:_DSC9025 IMG_2840_DSC8995_DSC9032 _DSC9021 _DSC9071 _DSC9087_DSC9000 _DSC9004 _DSC9069 _DSC9006 _DSC9013_DSC9078The Lewis and Clark Monument at the end of 2013 after the buildings are removed. The demolition has made way for a 7-story Residence Inn Marriott on the corner of Ridge-McIntire and West Main Street. The buildings were two of only a small handful of structures that were not razed in the 1960s when the controversial “Urban Renewal” program took much of Vinegar Hill.  Lewis, Clark and Sacajawea, for so long forced to look only westward, can now for a short while, cast their gazes a bit more to the north.

img536      Lewis and Clark Monument, circa 1960, by Ed Roseberry.  The Olds dealership (built in the late 1950s) can be partially seen at the left in this image. Some of the old commercial buildings on Vinegar Hill can be seen on the right.  These were among the first removed with “Urban Renewal.”

63470002Both buildings can be seen in this parade shot (also by Roseberry) from the 1970s after most of the rest of Vinegar Hill had been demolished.

IMG_9453This is perhaps the last aerial photo taken in November 2013 of the two structures intact (the buildings are in the center of this photo; click on image to enlarge).  Demolition began just a few days later.

Random Row BooksBoth buildings are now just a memory.

computer-generated virtual drive-by of the planned hotel can be seen on the website of Design Develop, LLC.

Roseberry images are © Edwin S. Roseberry and scanned and digitized by C’ville Images for our use here.  All other photos by Steve Trumbull © C’ville Images 2010-2014

One thought on “Changing Face of West Main: Demolition on Vinegar Hill

  1. Suddenly found these pictures. Am 70 years old living outside of Atlanta. My Dad came back from World War II, went to work for Russell Mooney Olds and worked there until 1962. Texaco building was original dealership building. General Motors pressured owner to build new showroom which was the building on the right from the street.

    I was born in Ch’ville and lived there until 1961 when went away to college, never to return except for visits.

    Thanks for the memories.
    Allen Carver

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