Preserving the Past to Enrich the Future
Preservation helps us define who we are in space and on the ribbon of time. For some of us, it is a visceral sensation. It conveys a deep sense of homecoming, comfort and belonging. These historic environments, moments, and experiences define us. We belong to a place, a time, and our people. These threads weave their way into the tapestry of our individual and collective identities. Practically, preservation is even more.
Preservation & Sustainability
Responsible stewards of the built environment are also responsible stewards of the natural environment. Reduce, reuse, recycle applies not only to bags, bottles, and containers, but also buildings, neighborhoods, and entire communities.
When we lose a historic resource in whole or in part, we waste not only the memory and culture housed in the resource, but also the materials used in the structure, earth the landfill sits upon, and the structure’s embodied energy.
Embodied energy is all the energy consumed by production of a structure: acquisition of natural resources, component production and delivery, and ongoing maintenance. Every structure is a complex combination of processed materials – each contributing to total embodied energy. This energy is different than the operational energy needed to heat, light, and water a resource. To reduce the waste of embodied energy and its environmental impacts, we continue to use durable and adaptable buildings.
Preservation & Economic Development
More than any other man-made element, historic buildings differentiate one community from all others. The quality of historic buildings says much about a community’s self-image. A community’s positive self-image is a prerequisite for nearly all other quality-of-life-elements. And quality-of-life is the single most critical ingredient in economic development. Historic preservation is a significant element in the quality-of-life equation.
Economic benefits of a comprehensive community preservation program include:
Stable or increased property values
Compatible land-use patterns created
Pockets of deterioration diluted
Private investment stimulated