How to Protect the Not-So-Special Historic Buildings
After a day of phone tag, I finally caught up with Tim Dennee, a staff reviewer for the Historic Preservation Review Board.
Yesterday, I wrote about Dennee's decision to not recommend a set of H Street Rowhouses for a historic landmark designation.
Despite his decision, Dennee was impressed with the nomination from the Capitol Hill Restoration Society and Advisory Neighborhood Commission 6A, and all the effort behind it. He had some thoughts about how the building could be preserved, in the end.
"It was discussed yesterday. Landmarks are sort of the best and most important buildings or properties or archeological resources or objects."
As for other buildings that are less distinctive though "nonetheless maybe significant...They’re frequently more important as a collection of buildings, showing all the aspects and all the levels and layers of development in the entire city.
The way to preserve them is to really look at the possibility of historic district designation...Of course that’s entirely dependent on whether the property owners in that area want to pursue that. So if you’re worried about a particular building, the way to go is landmarking, and then you don’t have a two year process of doing a survey of a neighborhood, and writing a longer nomination, and doing a lot of outreach."
Dennee said he heard rumblings about people exploring the idea of a historic district in that area. No immediate plans though. Let the two year process begin?