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File #: 21-165    Name:
Type: Recommendation Status: Individual Item Ready
File created: 2/4/2021 In control: Historic Landmark Commission
On agenda: 2/9/2021 Final action:
Title: HST21-050 Discuss and consider a Certificate of Alteration to construct a 2-story addition to the dwelling at 307 North Guenther Avenue, a local landmark known as the Ikel's House.
Attachments: 1. Location Map, 2. Application, 3. Photographs, 4. Site Plan & Renderings, 5. Variance Approval
Date Ver.Action ByActionResultAction DetailsMeeting DetailsVideo
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Caleb Gasparek, Historic Preservation Officer

Contact Info

(830) 221-4086 -


Subject Header



HST21-050 Discuss and consider a Certificate of Alteration to construct a 2-story addition  to the dwelling at 307 North Guenther Avenue, a local landmark known as the Ikel’s House.




Case #:                                          HST21-050


Owner:                                          Greg J. Williams


Applicant:                                          Gregory J. Williams

                                          307 N. Guenther Ave.

                                          New Braunfels, Tx 78130


Architect:                                          Gordon Colson, River Stone Designs Inc.

                                          323 Buckhaven Dr.

                                          Canyon Lake, TX 78133


The subject property is a rectangular shaped lot of approximately 8,000 square feet on the corner of North Guenther Avenue and Mill Street. The property is located just west of the Mill Street Historic District. The property became a local historic landmark in 2008. Additionally, a variance request for a side and rear setback encroachment was approved on December 18th, 2020.


Historic Context:

The subject dwelling was built in circa 1904 by German immigrant, William Ikels. A lien to the Pfieffer Lumber Company for building materials that same year suggests the build date of 1904.


Deed and census records suggest that William’s son, William Jr. owned the house with his wife Anna. William Sr. is listed as a house builder in the 1900 census, with William Jr. being a farmer. In 1957 William Jr. and his wife Anna gifted the house to their only child, Loraine Ikels Keaft. The house remained in the family until 1968.


The house is a good example of the folk Victorian style that was popular in the early 20th in New Braunfels and much of the US. The house has some added Queen Anne detailing such as decorative friezes and brackets, a wrap-around porch with Doric columns, and decorative spindle railing.



The applicant is requesting a certificate of alteration to construct a two-story addition to the northwest side of the existing home. The addition is proposed to include space for storage, a laundry room, additional bedrooms, and a home office. Parts of the existing home’s roof are proposed to be raised to match the height of the tallest dormer. Additionally, a turret is proposed over the existing front porch.


Staff Analysis:

According to Chapter 66 subsection 58 - the Commission should consider the following criteria for the approval of an alteration certificate:


(1) Every reasonable effort shall be made to adapt the property in a manner which requires minimal alteration of the building, structure, object, or site and its environment.

(2) The distinguishing original qualities or character of a building, structure, object, or site and its environment shall not be destroyed when possible. The removal or alteration of any historic material or distinctive architectural features should be avoided when possible.

(3) All buildings, structures, objects, and sites shall be recognized as products of their own time. Alterations that have no historical basis and which seek to create an earlier appearance shall be discouraged.

(4) Changes which may have taken place in the course of time are evidence of the history and development of a building, structure, object, or site and its environment. These changes may have acquired significance in their own right, and this significance shall be recognized and respected.

(5) Distinctive stylistic features or examples of skilled craftsmanship which characterize a building, structure, object, or site shall be kept where possible.

(6) Deteriorated architectural features shall be repaired rather than replaced, wherever possible. In the event replacement is necessary, the new material shall reflect the material being replaced in composition, design, color, texture, and other visual qualities. Repair or replacement of missing architectural features should be based on accurate duplications of features, substantiated by historical, physical, or pictorial evidence rather than on conjectural designs or the availability of different architectural elements from other buildings or structures.

(7) The surface cleaning of structures shall be undertaken with the gentlest means possible. Sandblasting and other cleaning methods that will damage the historic building materials shall not be undertaken.

(8) Every reasonable effort shall be made to protect and preserve archeological resources affected by, or adjacent to, any project.

(9) Contemporary design for alterations and additions to existing properties shall not be discouraged when such alterations and additions do not destroy significant historical, architectural, or cultural material, and such design is compatible with the size, scale, color, material, and character of the property, neighborhood, or environment.

(10) Wherever possible, new additions or alterations to buildings, structures, objects, or sites shall be done in such a manner that if such additions or alterations were to be removed in the future, the essential form and integrity of the building, structure, object, or site would be unimpaired.

Site plans indicate that the proposed addition will add 2,321 square feet of space. Additionally, the renderings indicate that the existing siding will remain, with new siding, gable trim, and windows to match those of what is on the existing house.


While vertical additions to historic dwellings are not unheard of, they provide additional challenges when compared to extending horizontally. But, space to expand horizontally is often limited in historic districts. Criteria 9 and 10 from Chapters 66-68 should be evaluated when looking at the potential impact a sizable addition may have.



1.                     Location Map

2.                     Application

3.                     Photographs

4.                     Site Plan & Renderings

5.                     Variance Approval