Green

 

By Robert Verrier, FAIA, NCARB

Boott Mills, before and after its adaptive reuse. Credit: Lowell Historical Society; Bruce T. Martin/The Architectural Team
Boott Mills, before and after its adaptive reuse

Human energy is the force behind successful economic development -- even when that energy began centuries ago. Along with my partner Michael Binette, I saw the power of this fact unfold around Boott Mills in Lowell, Massachusetts, one of the oldest surviving cotton textile mill yards in the United States -- and an engine of the city’s rebirth.

Tax credit incentives were a key to the city’s success, helping restore one of America’s most dramatic historic sites while also injecting vitality and pride into a now-flourishing neighborhood and tourist attractions. It’s also a good case study in what a community can achieve with tax incentives, foresight, and positive energy.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Guest Writer

Although we're always on the lookout for blog content, we encourage readers to submit story ideas or let us know if you've seen something that might be interesting and engaging for a national audience. Email us at editorial@savingplaces.org.

The Historic Tax Credit Takes Center Stage at the Timmy Awards

Posted on: December 19th, 2012 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

Written by Erica Stewart, Public Affairs Manager

Old Naval Hospital, Washington, DC. Credit: MacRostie Historic Advisors
Old Naval Hospital, Washington, DC.

Each year the National Housing & Rehabilitation Association (NH&RA) celebrates exceptional preservation real estate projects with its J. Timothy Anderson Awards for Excellence in Historic Rehabilitation (or, more casually, the Timmy Awards). Awards are based on overall design and quality; interpretation and respect of historic elements; innovative approach to construction and use of building materials; impact on the community; sustainability; and financial and market success of the project.

This year’s winners take the practice of historic rehabilitation and community revitalization to new heights, featuring exemplary work to restore the past while breathing new life into communities. From a 1920s apartment hotel in Kansas City renovated for affordable senior housing, to unique residential units in a mid-century Quonset hut in a small Virginia town, these projects are sure to motivate and inspire preservationists nationwide.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

Twitter Chat Recap/Reminder: From Windows to Fundraising

Posted on: November 29th, 2012 by Sarah Heffern

 

We've been talking a lot about windows here at the National Trust lately, thanks in large part to our colleagues in the Preservation Green Lab, who published a great report (Saving Windows, Saving Money: Evaluating the Energy Performance of Window Retrofit and Replacement) in October that gave us a lot of detailed information about the energy efficiency of historic windows.

The report's authors joined us for our monthly Twitter chat in November to talk about their findings and discuss how we can get the information out to people who are considering replacing their windows when repairs would be better for the building, the environment, and their wallet.

Here are some highlights of the conversation:... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class. Follow her on Twitter at @smheffern.

Tweet Chat Reminder: Let's Talk Windows on November 7

Posted on: November 6th, 2012 by Sarah Heffern 1 Comment

 

Since the dawn of the preservation movement -- or, at least it seems that way -- preservationists have been touting the value of maintaining historic windows. We know them to be one of the most defining characteristics of a building, as well as one that can be made highly energy-efficient, but with the constant drumbeat of replacement window advertising, our words are often drowned out.

However, with the arrival of the latest report from the Preservation Green Lab,  Saving Windows, Saving Money: Evaluating the Energy Performance of Window Retrofit and Replacement, we now have all sorts of research to back up our claims about historic windows. (See our 10 Things You Should Know About Retrofitting Historic Windows for highlights.)

We'll be discussing the report -- and how to talk about it to the home and business owners in your community -- during this month's Twitter chat, taking place tomorrow, Wednesday, November 7, from 4:00-5:00 EST.

How to participate:

1. Sign in to TwitterTweetDeck or TweetChat. We (the chat moderators) usually use TweetChat since it adds the hash tag automatically and allows for easy replies and re-tweets.

2. Follow and tweet with the hashtag #builtheritage.

3. Watch for the questions in the Q1 format. Provide answers using the A1 format, and interact with other participants using replies and retweets.

What we mean by the Q1/A1 format is this: Questions (we usually have four per chat) are posed by the moderators as Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4 about every 15 minutes. We ask that chatters reply with A1, A2, etc. to help everyone stay clear on what they’re responding to. A lot of side conversations and such still break out, but it helps keep things at least a little organized.

Hope to "see" you at the chat!

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class. Follow her on Twitter at @smheffern.

Young Preservationist: Daniel Linley Proves Old Windows' Worth

Posted on: November 1st, 2012 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 6 Comments

 

Written by Laura Wainmain, Editorial Intern

As part of back-to-school season, we’re featuring several impressive young preservationists who are saving places all around the country. This is the fourth profile in the series.

The window salesman who stopped by the 1917 Dutch Colonial home of Ann and Gary Linley probably has no idea that he was the inspiration for a sixth-grade science fair project. But after 12-year-old Daniel Linley of Elkhart, Ind. overheard his father turn down the salesman’s pitch to replace his historic sash-and-storm windows with new double-paned windows, he had an idea.

“I asked my dad why he didn’t buy the new windows, and Dad said our old windows were better,” says Daniel. “I didn’t believe him, so he challenged me to prove him wrong.” ... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

Preservation Round-Up: Flying Saucer Edition

Posted on: October 5th, 2012 by Emily Potter 1 Comment

 


Photo of the 1967 building that was originally a gas station, recently rehabbed to house a Starbucks.

Starbucks in a Flying Saucer: STL Preservationists Embrace Modernism -- Next American City

"Last Friday was the sort of day preservationists in St. Louis, Mo. had only ever dreamed about. As the sun started breaking through the cloud-gray morning sky, a Starbucks coffee shop opened its doors inside a renovated space-age concrete gas station at Grand and Forest Park boulevards, the subject to an intense demolition threat just one year prior."

Preservationists Aim to Protect Corcoran Interior -- CBS Baltimore

"Historic preservationists are nominating the interior of the Corcoran Gallery of Art as an architectural landmark to try to protect the building as the struggling museum considers selling it."

Transbay Transit Center to Present Unique Opportunities for Open Spaces -- The San Francisco Examiner

"Historically, the dimly-lit underpasses of freeway ramps have been havens for homeless encampments, shady drug deals and other types of seedy behavior. With the development of the new Transbay Transit Center requiring several overhead ramps for buses, project backers might have been intimidated by the prospect of those unseemly spaces dotting the landscape of the SoMa District. Instead, they’re viewing such spaces as places for positive possibilities."

American Planning Association's Annual List of "Great Neighborhoods" -- Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"When I travel, I like to visit "neighborhood" or "traditional" commercial districts as part of exploring and learning about cities and places that are new to me. And if you work on urban, neighborhood, and/or commercial district revitalization, it's a good way to learn best practice, get ideas, and have fun."

8 Ways to Build More Sustainable Communities -- Sustainable Cities Collective

"When we introduced the topic of social sustainability for our recent #CityTalk with the Berkeley Group and Social Life, we knew that we had a challenge on our hands trying to define that which “many a thesis has tried and failed to define.” It was clear that we needed to put many more brains together to begin to wrap our minds around ways to build and design socially sustainable communities."

Preservation ABCs: D is for Door -- Preservation in Pink

“Architectural styles are defined by all elements of a building, from siding to windows to shape to massing, ornamentation, details and doors. As much as preservationists discuss the negative effects of window replacements, door replacements are often overlooked, yet just as detrimental.”

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Emily Potter

Emily Potter is a copywriter at the National Trust. She enjoys writing about places of all kinds, the stories that make them special, and the people who love them enough to save them.