Our Preservation Values

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Historic Preservation is one of the most inherently “green” professions in addition to providing a multitude of benefits to communities. It can be an effective economic tool for redevelopment, foster business development, create jobs and strengthen communities. Yet many see efforts at historic preservation merely as exercises in nostalgia and as an infringement on property rights. The following are some reasons other than wanting to retain beautiful buildings for being a proponent of historic preservation:

  • When you choose to repair and restore an existing home, you are performing the ultimate recycling project. Sustainable practice recommendations include considering the embodied energy of products in addition to the long-term energy savings. When a historic home is demolished, all the energy used to produce and assemble the home is wasted. Since the energy is already expended, preserving the home has much less impact on the environment.
  • Historic Preservation reduces landfill wastes. Estimates vary, but it is commonly accepted that between 15% and 20% of municipal solid waste comes from construction and demolition projects. Obviously, landfill debris would be reduced if more people choose to preserve an existing building rather than demolish and build new. When true preservation practices are followed during historic home renovations (“repair rather than replace”), waste is reduced even more.
  • According to noted economist and historic preservation advocate, Donovan Rypkema, “Sustainable Development requires environmental responsibility, economic responsibility, and social/cultural responsibility.” Preservation and renovation of existing building stock is the one type of development that merges these three elements, helping maintain vibrant, livable communities in addition to being environmentally and economically responsible.
  • Since most historic Florida buildings were built without air conditioning, they already utilize many energy saving features that “green” designers are rediscovering. Items such as wide overhangs, operable windows with screens, screen doors, awnings and ceiling fans can reduce cooling costs when used during our more temperate months instead of relying on mechanical systems. In addition, historic buildings are often constructed of more durable materials than are readily available today.
  • We agree completely with the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s policy statement on community revitalization: “Revitalizing our historic hometowns and Main Streets is not about nostalgia. It is about reinvesting in our older and historic neighborhoods. Preservation-based community development not only protects our heritage, but also is a viable alternative to sprawl that creates affordable housing, generates jobs, supports independent businesses, increases civic participation, and bolsters a community’s sense of place.”
  • Historic preservation makes economic sense. Studies have shown that investment in historic neighborhoods and commercial centers stabilize property values, encourage redevelopment, stimulate business development, and generate tourist dollars.

Places that people love and care about do not spring up overnight; they are built over time, giving them a sense of those who came before and developing character that is unlike anywhere else. Preserving these buildings and sites gives us a sense of place and provide a tangible link to our heritage. We hope that Historic Shed products and services can help efforts to maintain and preserve historic properties while improving their functionality.

Posted on January 18, 2009 10:07 pm

    One option is to buy one of the homes currently being relocated in the Ybor or Tampa Heights Historic Districts by FDOT. The homes are being moved, set on new foundations, then being sold (at very low prices) to anyone willing to agree to rehab them within a certain time frame. There are even deferred payment options available to buy them. Several homes will be moved in next month or so and will be advertised at http://www.tampagov.net/dept_Real_Estate/ under Request for Proposals. The contact person is Wanda Thompson. Send an email to her at Wanda.Thompson@ci.tampa.fl.us and request to be put on the notification list for FDOT relocation homes so you will know when the next ones are ready. The homes are part of the Phase II relocations and there are low interest loans available from the City to help with the rehab. Go to our site http://www.preservationresource.com/tis-ii-building-moves.htm for more info and for links to the City loan program.

    Another option is to contact Kevin Stuteville, a realtor who specializes in the area. He has several Ybor-related real estate sites but check out http://www.liveinyborcity.com/ which happens to feature two already renovated FDOT relocated homes right now (part of the Phase I relocations that can be seen at http://www.preservationresource.com/tis-historic-building-moves.htm.)

  2. Denis A. Baldwin

    My wife and I have been really throwing around the idea of buying a historical home (or perhaps an old cigar factory) in or around Ybor and putting the cash into it to restore it to it’s formal glory. Does anyone know where I can find listings of these kinds of places? or do I have to just dig through the MLS for them?


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