Existing Buildings Get Their Due

Posted on: January 30th, 2008 by Patrice Frey

 

A newsy item over the weekend that I’m remiss in not posting before now.

If you haven’t seen it already, check out the New York Times article from Sunday Green Buildings Don’t Have to be New (surprise!). Article notes that the “vast stock of older buildings presents a much bigger opportunity [than new construction] to cut down on energy consumption and carbon emissions that contribute to the warming of the planet."

With the Clinton Climate Initiative lining up behind greening the existing building stock and the U.S. Green Building Council renewing their efforts to address existing buildings in an improved version of LEED-EB, maybe times are looking better for our existing building stock.

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.

Historic Denny's in Seattle?

Posted on: January 30th, 2008 by Preservation magazine

 

SeattleIt may look like a boarded-up fast-food restaurant, but fans of a Denny's restaurant in northwest Seattle want to make it a landmark.

Complete with a swooping roof, large glass windows, and a futuristic flair, this particular Denny's is characterized as Googie, a bold, post-World War II architectural style that first became popular in Los Angeles. Architect Clarence Mayhew designed the building in 1964 as a Manning's Cafeteria restaurant, which went out of business and became a Denny's in 1983. Although the structure is now boarded up, it remains one of Seattle's few remaining examples of Googie architecture.

Benaroya Companies, a real-estate development company that bought the structure in 2006 from the Seattle Monorail Project is currently in close negotiations with Rhapsody Partners, a Kirkland-based development firm that wants to construct a condominium tower on the site.

However, Rhapsody's condo plans have been temporarily sidetracked. Earlier this month, Benaroya nominated the Denny's for landmark status.... 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.

 

I’m happy to report that, on January 29th, President Bush signed into law a temporary reprieve for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which federal officials want to replace with a replica because of repairable cosmetic imperfections.

Thanks to the advocacy of 4,000 National Trust for Historic Preservation members and friends who asked Congress and the Army to repair rather than replace the authentic Tomb, Senators Daniel Akaka and Jim Webb successfully amended the Defense Authorization Bill to include a measure that will delay hasty action, mandate a new meaningful study, and require a report to Congress.

The historic monument is not safe, but now preservationists have a real opportunity to reverse the Army’s decision.

The Defense Authorization Bill requires the Secretary of the Army and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to report to Congress within 180 days to:

  1. Describe the Army and Department of Veterans Affairs’ current plan to replace and dispose of the 1932 Tomb Monument;
  2. Assess the feasibility and advisability of repairing the Tomb Monument;
  3. Describe the current efforts (if any) to maintain and preserve the Tomb Monument;
  4. Explain why no attempt has been made since 1989 to repair the Tomb Monument;
  5. Provide a comprehensive comparison (for the first time) of the cost of replacing versus the cost of repairing the Tomb Monument; and,
  6. Assess the structural integrity of the Tomb Monument.

Since April 2007, when we learned of the plan to replace the monument, the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s president Richard Moe has lobbied key members of Congress as well as the Army and Department of Veterans Affairs.

We’re also very pleased that the Arlington County government, Arlington Heritage Alliance, APVA – Preservation Virginia, American Institute for Conservation, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and Virginia Department of Historic Resources each support repairing the cracks in the 1932 marble monument – rather than replacing the authentic monument.

-- Rob Nieweg

Robert Nieweg is the director of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Southern Field Office

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.

Wal-Mart Pays to Move 1922 Barn

Posted on: January 29th, 2008 by Margaret Foster

 

Benedict Barn, MichiganAs much a landmark in Ionia, Mich., as the Statue of Liberty, a 1922 barn seemed doomed to fall for a Wal-Mart. Now a nearby YMCA is reconstructing the red barn to use as a living classroom.

Four years ago, Michigan farmer Keith Benedict sold 35 acres and the barn his father had built to Wal-Mart. Developers tore down the farm's main house, two machine sheds, and a corn crib to make way for a Wal-Mart and Taco Bell, built in 2005.

When locals—led by self-described "Barn Lady" Jan Corey Arnett—heard about the barn's potential demolition, they bought the structure from Wal-Mart, promising to move it. The National Trust for Historic Preservation's Midwest Office, along with the Michigan Barn Preservation Network, encouraged the company to save the building. ... 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.

University of Minnesota Wants to Lease, Move 1887 Building

Posted on: January 28th, 2008 by Preservation magazine

 

Music Education Building, U of MOne of the five buildings that comprised the University of Minnesota's original campus in Minneapolis is up for lease, and the school is struggling to find the right tenant.

"We've been struggling to find a use for the building because it's a little small for the university's typical volume of operations," says James Litsheim, senior architect of capital planning for the university. "However, someone else could easily use it for office space, a coffee shop—just about any kind of use you can think of for a smaller space."... 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.