Preservation Magazine

Standoff in Philadelphia

Posted on: January 3rd, 2008 by Margaret Foster

 

plicoh.jpgThe city of Philadelphia is expanding its convention center, and three historic buildings stand in the way.

At 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 22, two days after the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Society ruled against the demolition of the structures, the city's department of general services removed the cast-stone facade of a 1962 modern addition to the Philadelphia Life Insurance Co. Building.

A court date is set for Jan. 8. In the meantime, the agency must "save and preserve" the dismantled facade, according to the Dec. 24 order by Commonwealth Court Judge Bonnie Leadbetter.

The demolition violated a 2004 agreement between the Pennsylvania Convention Center Authority and Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission to incorporate the three connected buildings into the new complex in exchange for demolishing several others.... 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.

Storm Causes $2 Million in Damages to Historic Astoria, Oregon

Posted on: January 2nd, 2008 by Margaret Foster

 

astoria.jpgAstoria, Ore., is still picking up the pieces after a storm pounded the Pacific Coast city of 10,000 last month."I was proud of this town," says John Guttenberger, former president of the Lower Columbia Preservation Society. "The storefronts were blown out, and rather than looting, people were putting things back in stores. It was really quite sweet. It was a nice bonding experience in its own strange way … It was like waking up in Who-ville."

With winds topping 100 miles an hour, the Dec. 2 storm caused $14 million in damages, according to a preliminary report the city sent to the state historic preservation office on Monday.

"Our preliminary estimate for historic properties is around $2 million, and there would be approximately 99 damaged properties," says Brett Estes, the city's community development director. ... 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.

Best & Worst of 2007

Posted on: December 28th, 2007 by Preservation magazine 1 Comment

 

Is Brooklyn Under Siege?Is preservation becoming more hip? This year, celebrities like Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, and Darryl Hannah showed their support of historic architecture and wide open spaces. Longtime building buffs like Diane Keaton, who likes to restore Los Angeles houses, were joined by fellow showbiz types like director Michael Moore, who has promised to rehab a historic Michigan theater.

Here's the best and worst in the world of historic preservation news of 2007, compiled by our magazine editors.

Best

Floodwaters Spare Farnsworth House

A few weeks after Brad Pitt's August visit to the iconic Farnsworth House, floodwaters reached the front steps of the Plano, Ill., house designed by Mies van der Rohe in 1951. Miraculously, only the landscape suffered damage.... 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.

Ohio Town Saves 1880 House

Posted on: December 20th, 2007 by Margaret Foster 1 Comment

 

Oxford’s Township HouseTwo years ago, a one-room house built in Oxford, Ohio, in 1880 was on its way to being bulldozed to make way for apartments. Instead, residents of the college town rallied to save the Italianate building, and today the Township House was moved four miles to the safety of a state park.

The two-hour move, delayed twice because of bad weather, was "quite an adventure," says Laura Henderson, member of the town's historic and architectural preservation commission and co-chair of the moving committee.

"Everyone was out cheering and clapping. It was a really uplifting experience," Henderson says. "It will go down in history as being one of the major community efforts in a long time." ... 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.

New Plans for Pennsylvania's 1872 Star Barn

Posted on: December 19th, 2007 by Margaret Foster 2 Comments

 

Star BarnOne of the most memorable barns in Pennsylvania has a new owner who plans to move the 1872 Gothic revival structure to a rural site and restore it as an "agricultural expo center."

Seven years ago, to protect the Star Barn and its ancillary buildings from encroaching development, the nonprofit Preservation Pennsylvania bought its 3.6-acre property, listed it on the National Register of Historic Places, and waited for the right owner.

On Friday, the Star Barn property will be sold to Agrarian Country, a nonprofit based in Middletown, Pa., three miles from the barn.

"The Star Barn is just part of a larger plan for Agrarian Country to establish a showcase for agriculture in Pennsylvania," says company president Robert S. Barr, who has restored other historic buildings in the area. "When we move it and convert to a commercial building, we'll fix it up so it'll be available for shows, dinners, banquets, and community theater groups," Barr says. "From the outside, it'll look identical."... 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.

Lost: Las Vegas Casino

Posted on: December 18th, 2007 by Margaret Foster

 

New Frontier HotelIn typical Las Vegas style, a 1942 casino was imploded last month after an extravagant fireworks display.

Thousands of tourists watched the 2:00 a.m. demolition on Nov. 13, cheering the demise of the New Frontier Hotel, where Elvis Presley made his Las Vegas debut in 1956 and the Supremes made their final performance in 1970.

The 16-story hotel, located on the Strip, will make way for the Plaza Las Vegas resort, a replica of New York's landmark hotel.

In May, El Ad Properties, an Israel-based company that bought the Plaza Hotel two years ago, paid a record $1.2 billion for the 986-room hotel and its 36 acres. The New Frontier closed in July.

Watch a video of the implosion >>

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.