PlanPhilly

Preservation

    • Free Library - Tacony Branch

Preservation of historic resources will be a priority as Rebuild develops list of projects

As the Rebuild initiative moves forward this fall, the preservation of historic buildings in the target areas will be a priority. “We don’t know yet which buildings will be historic preservation…

    • Oxford Trinity annex

Parish the thought: Lawncrest neighbors fight plan to replace church building with Royal Farms

The venerable Trinity Oxford Church, in Northeast Philadelphia’s Lawncrest section, wants to lease roughly half of its land for a new Royal Farms gas station and fried chicken emporium. The proposal…

    • Neighbors gather at Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church Thursday to consider the Boys and Girls Club proposal

For the proposed replacement of the Germantown Boys and Girls Club, community consensus comes in baby steps

At first glance, the ongoing cacophony over the future of Germantown’s Boys and Girls Club looked ready to hit a rare harmonious note. About 45 nearby residents and neighborhood organizers gathered…

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ABOUT PRESERVATION

Historic preservation is a professional endeavor that seeks to preserve, conserve and protect buildings, objects, landscapes or other artifacts of historic significance. Urban design practitioners have assigned the preservation of historic sites and properties varying levels of importance over the last century. However, the importance of maintaining a sense of context and understanding for the forms that preceded us has increased over the last thirty years for many reasons. The market, as well as the urban design discipline itself, has moved us to understand and appreciate that a site’s history and context is an integral part of urban planning.

Government has responded accordingly; the federal branch has established a process by which tax breaks are awarded to developers renovating historic sites, and many local governments have the power to permanently ban demolition of any structure with a certain level of historical significance.

There are now local and regional historical commissions charged with protecting local jewels of the past, though many buildings of the same typology were destroyed decades ago without concern.  In Philadelphia, the Historical Commission reviews any proposed change to properties on the Local Register of Historic Places, which prevents these property owners from making significant exterior changes without approval.  The Register is mainly comprised of individual properties, though there are “historic districts” that are protected, such as Society Hill.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN PRESERVATION

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