May is National Preservation Month! The Alexandria Historic Preservation Commission is joining with preservation organizations throughout the country to celebrate our city’s historic structures and the people who work to identify, protect and promote them by embracing the theme, “See, Save, Celebrate!” What a fitting title to describe the success of AHPC over the past months and encourage our future goals.
See: As the recipient of a State of Louisiana Survey and Planning grant, AHCP has been working to identify and record our local historic resources. To date 1,355 structures in Alexandria’s Local Historic District No. 3 have been surveyed and photographed. This provides a record of architectural styles and historic materials that will contribute to a statewide database of historic resources. It also encourages the recognition and appreciation of historic house types, building materials, and preservation practices on the local level.
Save: AHPC introduced our monthly Preservation in Progress (PIP) award in September 2012. This monthly award brings visibility to local preservation projects with the placement of our PIP yard sign and an article in Cenla Focus, which describes the restoration challenges and creative solutions that resulted in a successfully rehabilitated historic structure. This monthly award and column not only recognize excellence in preservation, but also encourage others in the preservation process.
In conjunction with several PIP awards, the AHPC hosted a Tax Credit Walking Tour in the fall of 2012. Participants had the rare opportunity to get an inside view of an recently restored Garden District home and learn exactly how 45% in State and Federal historic preservation tax credits created the financial incentive that made the project work. Attendees also toured a blighted property in the “before” stages of restoration to fully appreciate how preservation efforts can save a building and turn an eyesore into a source of neighborhood pride.
Celebrate: In an effort to better connect with the preservation community in Alexandria, AHPC created our own Facebook page, revealed our fresh, new logo and completely revamped our webpage. We’re excited about our new image, and we look forward to being the preservation resource for Cenla. Connect with us at www.alexandriahpc.org or on Facebook at Alexandria Historic Preservation Commission.
In March, AHPC celebrated the state-level approval of a new National Register Historic District in Alexandria. On March 21st, the Louisiana National Register Review Board approved the nomination for the Alexandria Post-War Suburbs Historic District, which features an excellent collection of ranch and contemporary houses in their near-original condition. The nomination is now in Washington D.C. awaiting final approval by the National Park Service and the Secretary of the Interior, and AHPC highly anticipates that Alexandria will soon be home to the very first Mid-Century Modern National Register Historic District in the State of Louisiana! We’ve been thrilled to work with the Mid-Century Neighborhood Group that has formed as a result of this nomination process. To find out more about the National Register nomination, check out the neighborhood website midcenturyalex.org. You can bet we’re planning an even bigger celebration should the nomination pass!
AHPC is looking forward to building on these accomplishments and becoming a better local preservation resource. We value your input! Visit our website or Facebook page to let us know how we are doing and how we can improve. Have an idea for a workshop? Let us know. We’re here to help you see, save, and celebrate preservation!