Tagged: The Economics of Historic Preservation

Preservation Is…

Rehabilitating historic properties conserves taxpayers’ dollars, conserves our local heritage, and conserves the natural environment. Rehabilitating historic buildings and using the infrastructure that is already in place to serve them is the height of fiscal and environmental responsibility.
– Donovan Rypkema , Place Economics
GERMANOW-SIMON REHAB
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This Week

A weekly round-up of my favorite preservation related stories from around the web and in the newsClick on the title of each story to jump through to the original article/blog post.

10 Forgotten Lessons of Mid-Century Design– Build

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Image via Build

I don’t know that these principles are necessarily forgotten or that they existed only in mid-century design, but they are definitely rare these days. You don’t see many mcmansions with small cozy bedrooms, naturally scaled proportions, or interiors that really invite the outside in.

Breaking Bad’s Reality – Four Dirty Paws

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Aaron Paul (as Jesse Pinkman) in a photo mash-up outside the Dog House in Albuquerque. Image via Four Dirty Paws

The hit AMC series Breaking Bad builds a highly textured and believable reality by using real sites in and around Albuquerque, NM.  The blogger at Four Dirty Paws tracked down some of the places featured in the series, including the unique mid-century car wash owned by Walt and Skylar and the quirky Dog House Drive Thru. If you are a fan, check it out!

Reversal of Fortune – 99% Invisible

“I fell in love with architecture on the Chicago River. It provides a beautiful vantage point to take in all the marvelous skyscrapers. Unlike other cities that cram you on the sidewalk between looming towers.  The Chicago River pushes buildings apart, giving you the opportunity to really take in the city’s glory in glass, steel, and concrete. But Chicago’s biggest design achievement isn’t a building at all—it’s the Chicago River itself.” The REVERSED it’s flow!

Rare Fore-Edge Paintings Revealed at University of Iowa – Colossal

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Image via Colossal

“A few days ago Colleen Theisen who helps with outreach and instruction at the Special Collections & University Archives at the University of Iowa shared an amazing gif she made that demonstrates something called fore-edge painting on the edge of a 1837 book called Autumn by Robert Mudie. Fore-edge painting, which is believed to date back as early as the 1650s, is a way of hiding a painting on the edge of a book so that it can only be seen when the pages are fanned out. There are even books that have double fore-edge paintings, where a different image can be seen by flipping the book over and fanning the pages in the opposite direction.”

GHF 2.0 – Time Tells

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“Wanna lose a million dollars a year? Take a general store and turn it into a house museum.” Image via Time Tells

“Now of course I screamed and shouted to save buildings, but for over thirty years I have understood preservation/conservation to be an economic strategy. I recognize the distinction between the museum and the everyday to be an artificial distinction. You can raise money to preserve a museum piece, to be sure, but you need to keep raising that money – forever. I soon realized that the majority of preservation happens not by removing objects from our everyday and our economy, but by placing them at the center of our everyday economy. By exploiting their use value”

This Week

A weekly round-up of my favorite preservation related stories from around the web and in the newsClick on the title of each story to jump through to the original article/blog post.

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Edith Windsor (at the center of the Supreme Court case) first met her wife, Thea Spyer, at Portofino (now The Malt House) in Greenwhich Village. Image via The Malt House

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s historic decision this week, the NYT briefly profiles some of NYC’s gay landmarks. “… [S]ocial landmarks don’t make their significance readily apparent. A bit of context is often needed to appreciate the triumphs, disasters and dramas that have played out in these buildings. The Gay Pride Month 2013 guide (PDF) prepared by Christopher Brazee, Gale Harris and Jay Shockley of the Landmarks Preservation Commission is an engaging reminder that buildings can breathe with life to those who know something about them. ”

Six Reasons Why More Americans Should Care About Saving Old Homes – Preservation Journey

Six quick and dirty reasons why we should care about saving old homes.

What Happens To An Olympic City After The Olympics? – The Picture Show

Jon Pack and Gary Hustwit are documenting former Olympic cities. “We’re not for or against the Olympics,” says Hustwit. “We wanted to see how all of this development has been integrated into the cities — or not. And to look at the idea of planning … for the legacy of these facilities.”  The slide show offers 16 new images, a sort of “where are they now,” of Olympic facilities.  If you are interested in learning more about the impact of the Olympics on cities, check out this Bricks + Mortar series from earlier in the year.

Ghost Island Looms Large Among Displaced Inupiat Eskimos -NPR

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“The abandoned Kings Island is only accessible by helicopter or by chartered boat.” Image via NPR

“Out in Alaska’s Bering Sea, about 90 miles from Nome, sits a small, rocky island that used to be home to a couple of hundred Inupiat Eskimos. They lived in houses built on stilts, perched on rocky cliffs. Then, about 50 years ago, the threat of rock slides, the spread of tuberculosis and the loss of men to World War II forced residents to relocate to the mainland. King Island has been a ghost island ever since. Now, Anchorage poet Joan Naviyuk Kane has raised almost $50,000 through to bring a group of former King Islanders and their descendants, including herself, back for a visit. Kane has written two books of poetry, which both deal with issues of displacement and cultural identity, and is currently working on a novel based on the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.” Place and cultural identity are often wrapped up together and are common issues for preservationists.

 Heritage Preservation Brings $1B to Utah Economy – Herald Extra

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Utah. Image via The Heritage Tourist

“Heritage and history are a billion-dollar business in Utah, according to a new study.  Heritage tourism has brought more than $1 billion to Utah’s coffers, with $717 million in direct and indirect spending by visitors to heritage sites and special events; and another $350 million in invested taxpayer funds that stayed in Utah rather than being sent to Washington because of projects that used the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit.”

 


 

Did You Know?

Did you know that  a study published in 2011 by the Center for Resource Conservation showed retrofitted historic windows outperform new vinyl windows in terms of energy efficiency and economy?

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“Removing old windows is like stripping patina from antique wood.” Via Offay Design Studio (click the photo to jump through)

Be sure to check out the link for specifics about the eleven different preservation treatment options that were investigated!