1200 Broad Street - The Professional Building

36.017318, -78.918794

Cross Street
Year built
Construction type
Building Type
Can you help?
You don't need to know everything, but do you know the architect?
Log in or register and you can edit this.

Looking east at the intersection of Broad and West Club, May 1938
(Courtesy Duke Forest Collection)

The northeast corner of Broad and West Club was initially residential in nature; the area to the west of Watts Hospital developed in earnest during the period between 1910 and 1930.

The Professional Building was built in ~1951, primarily as an office building for medical professionals. It is similar in character and function to fellow mid-century modern medical office building The Medical Arts Building on South Gregson St.

Professional Building ~1950s
(Courtesy The Herald-Sun Newspaper)

Additional residential teardowns for future development, which would become parking lot for the Professional Building, looking west from Sixth Street, 10.24.53
(Courtesy The Herald-Sun Newspaper)

After the departure of Watts Hospital, most of the medical practices left Broad Street and headed northward to office parks past I-85. However, the now-Lane Professional Building still houses dentistry and holistic medicine practices, per a quick googling.

Professional Building, 06.27.09

Find this spot on a Google Map.



I like the replacement windows better but miss the double glass doors at the front. I guess the house immediately to the left in the first picture is gone now, because that's not the Marie Austin building.

The building also appears to host some sort of church gathering on the weekends.

I miss the aluminum awning windows. I know they don't open or insulate well after awhile, but they were the deal in the semi-air-conditioned buildings of the 1950's. I am guessing the double doors were replaced with a large single door so a wheelchair or stretcher could get in without opening both doors. Frameless glass doors are pretty but can be drafty without a vestibule.

To me the most interesting part of any of the photos is not the Professional Building, but what is that on top of the house in the first (May 1938) photo? Too big to be a bird or lightning rod, methinks.

Anon, you're seeing the dangling street light. The angle makes it appear to be perched upon the top of the house in the background. Look at the photo in the post below this one -- you'll see same light from a different angle.

Boy, do I feel silly! I really thought it was a decorative roof ornament of some kind. Thanks for figuring this out, Lynn!

This is one of my favorite commercial buildings in Durham. When it was renovated a few years ago, the owner wanted to cover the brick with stucco. The Historic Preservation Commission denied that request, but did approve demolition of the (drastically altered) structure immediately to the north.

The house immediately to the left of the Professional Building was 1202 Broad Street and my family rented the upstairs apartment when I was a very young child which would have been about 1948 thru 1950.  I would walk across the street to Hospital Pharmacy and have Dr. Spencer or his wife mix me a Coca Cola at their soda fountain and they also had a refrigerated Whitman's candy display since air conditioning was non existant at that time.  After that, we moved to 1314 Broad Street, the block that also was the block that had Bolinger's Boarding house.

My Dentist, Dr. Kanoy, was located on the second floor of the professional building until moving up the street in the early 70's

While I have long forgotten his name, the surgeon who removed my appendix in 1969 at Watts Hospital had his office in this building. We lived right behind it at 1200 then 1202 Clarendon Street for a while. Both houses long gone now.

In reply to by Joseph Sparks

The surgeon may have been Dr. H. Max Schiebel. He most likely had an office there.

Add new comment

Log in or register to post comments.