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Historic Knoxville High Lovingly Redone



Historic Knoxville High is open again. It first opened in 1910. Now, 108 years later it is open again as Historic Knoxville High Independent Senior Living.

The building has been restored and repurposed by Dover Development, a Knoxville firm that has spent more than $15 million on the project, creating 80 units and outstanding shared amenities.

 

“We’ve kept wonderful historical features,” said Dover’s General Manger Rick Dover, “and we have added many features nobody even imagined in 1910, such as surveillance cameras, personalized key fob door entry, wireless nurse call stations, public Wi-Fi and two new elevators.”

 

“When I started the process of selling this neglected public building and getting it back on the tax rolls, I knew it could be a jewel,” said Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett. “It is even better than I could have expected. Now it will add more people to the downtown area, increase our tax base and provide wonderful housing for independent seniors.”

 

Burchett and other elected officials from the county and the city toured the facility and helped cut the ribbon officially opening it today.

 

“Buildings built in that era were built to last, and with features that are absolutely extraordinary,” said Dover. “Some of them we didn’t even know were there but discovered when tearing out things like suspended ceilings.” More than 500 original windows have been restored and retained. Oak classroom doors, stairwells, handrails and decorative tin ceilings are still a part of the building.

 

“But there is plenty that is new,” said Dover Project Manager Shea Ramsey. “Classrooms have been converted to apartments with interactive kitchens and lavish finishes. We have large sky-lit atriums, a salon/spa, fitness center, piano bar, bocce ball court and historical art galleries.”

 

Graduates of the school include writer James Agee, former UT President Ed Boling, opera singer Mary Costa and actors Patricia Neal and John McCollum. A group of former students is helping to curate exhibits about the school’s history.

Dover Development is the area’s premier firm for renovating and repurposing buildings. Its award winning projects include the new Hyatt Place Hotel on Gay Street, Oakwood Senior Living in North Knoxville and the Guest House at the Alexander Inn in Oak Ridge, which won the highest preservation award given in the U.S., the Chairman’s Award from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, whose members are appointed by the President of the

United States.

Historic Knoxville High is meant for independent seniors; it is not an assisted living facility. It will be managed by Senior Solutions Management Group.

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