WHO WE ARE

Your friends and neighbors and preservation professionals!

Board of Directors

•         Rebecca Landis, President

Historic property owner; Corvallis-Albany Farmers' Markets, Market Director

•          Roz Keeney, Vice President

Corvallis Historic Resources Commission; Historic Preservation Consultant

•          Lyn Larson, Secretary

Historic property owner; CH2M HILL Tech Editor (ret); Whiteside Theatre Foundation, former Director; Jobs Addition Neighborhood Association, Secretary

•          Carolyn Ver Linden, Treasurer

Historic property owner; Sr Research Asst OSU Botany/Plant Pathology (ret); past Whiteside Theatre Foundation, former Secretary, Treasurer

•          Kent Daniels

Historic property owner; former Corvallis City Councilor, Planning Commissioner, Parks & Natural Areas Board; Former Benton County Commissioner; People for Parks

•          Tony Howell

Historic property owner; Former Corvallis City Councilor,  Planning Commissioner; City/OSU Collaboration Neighborhood Planning Group; Linn County Health Services

•          Sue Licht

Historic Preservation Architect;  Historic Resources Commission

•          Margot Pearson

OSU Assistant Professor Microbiology (ret); Whiteside Theatre Foundation, Board Chair; Coronado Homeowners Association, Board

•          Lori Stephens, Henkle House Project Coordinator

Historic property owner; Broadleaf Architecture, Principal; former Historic Resources Commission Chair

 

•          BA Beierle, Past President

Historic property owner; Historic Preservation Consultant; Restore Oregon, Advisor; Heritage Tree Committee; People for Parks

GUIDING PRINCIPLES

Benefit historic resources and heritage of the Corvallis/Benton County area.

  • Showcase quality preservation and quality resources

  • Consider quality-of-life, environmental and economic sustainability and an enduring sense of place

  • Educate others regarding threats to our heritage and resources

  • Cultivate and communicate with a broad range of partners and consider affected interests

  • Include a spectrum of cultures in our membership, activities, programs and highlighted resources

  • Actively recruit members and apply their skills to implement our mission

  • Practice sound financial management

  • Fund raise actively and creatively to implement our mission

  • Conduct our meetings in an open and transparent manner for our membership

  • Support our local economy, especially downtown.

  • Celebrate our successful projects

  • Encourage growth of member' personal skills and friendships

We are currently looking for additional members.

Please contact us if you are interested in volunteering.

OUR MISSION

PreservationWORKS!, a nonprofit educational organization, honors, maintains, and promotes irreplaceable heritage resources in Corvallis/Benton County, Oregon.

 

Our purposes:

•         Identify.  Discover, assess and document the historic, cultural, architectural, visual and  environmental heritage of the Corvallis/Benton County area

•         Educate:  Inform members and the public about the importance and techniques of heritage conservation

•         Steward:  Facilitate the preservation of buildings, land, homes, and other resources by assisting owners, organizational acquisition, and other strategies.

•         Fund:  Accept donations and raise funds to achieve the above purposes.

Our History

In April 2004, a group of community-minded, preservation supporters met and agreed that a local preservation organization was needed and warranted.  That charter group:

•         Determined that work would focus on both Corvallis and Benton County

•         Identified preservation needs and threatened resources

•         Developed goals based on needs, and

•         Adopted guiding principles.

The informal group registered as a nonprofit educational and charitable organization with the State of Oregon and later as a nonprofit 501 C (3) organization with the IRS.

 

Initially we worked with the City of Corvallis Historic Preservation Advisory Board (HPAB) and the Benton County Historic Resources Commission (BCHRC) to strengthen Preservation Month activities.  Early coordination and partnerships expanded the program to the robust, sustained, comprehensive annual program it is today.

 

PreservationWORKS! members collaborated with the Benton County Historic Resources Commission to research, develop, and produce the first-ever, self-guided Driving Tours of Benton County.  The three-part publication showcases more than 80 structures and sites in Benton County and brings motorists and bicyclists to landmarks rich with stories of our growth.

 

In 2005, members actively participated in summer-long public meetings to redraft Corvallis' Historic Preservation Code from advisory review to a quasi-judicial body – the Historic Resources Commission (HRC) – with clear and objective standards for decision-making.  During a long hot summer, this was formidable research work with animated discussion.  City Council adopted the code effective June 2006.  No one anticipated what would happen next.

At their first public hearing, the newly-created HRC reviewed an application for sweeping changes to downtown's Whiteside Theatre.  The HRC denied the application; developers then appealed to City Council that subsequently overturned the HRC's decision.  Advocates then filed an appeal with the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA).  Volunteers fueled and funded all of this demanding work.  A new organization formed, the Whiteside Theatre Foundation, that included much of PreservationWORKS! leadership.  After the corporate owner gifted the theater to the Whitesiders in May 2008, a community temblor ravaged historic neighborhoods around the Oregon State University (OSU) campus.

 

Rampant new student townhouses to meet OSU's burgeoning residential needs eviscerated historic residential neighborhoods and changed the landscape of Corvallis.  The erosion of affordable heritage housing reached a tipping point when a developer leveled Wilson Woods, a block of vintage village-style student homes.  Suddenly, property owners city-wide understood that historic preservation included their neighborhood and indeed their homes.

 

Community outrage prompted the City of Corvallis and OSU to launch an unprecedented, three-year collaboration to address neighborhood parking, livability, and planning issues.  PreservationWORKers diligently served on and supported each of these committees and helped craft community-vetted responses.  Results included parking districts formed, municipal nuisance abatement ordinances, and strategies to guide future development notably a historic preservation plan and a livability code to protect student tenants and neighborhood health and safety.  Independently, PreservationWORKS! launched a Neighborhood Photo Survey to document existing conditions as a reference for collaboration decision-making.

 

At the state level, PreservationWORKS! facilitated the first-ever Oregon Heritage Barn Workshop in 2011.  Presented at Corvallis' Knotts-Owens Farm with Restore Oregon, barn enthusiasts from across the state gathered to share strategies and techniques.  This workshop launched an annual statewide event to convene experts who share their experiences and skills with Oregon ranchers, farmers, barn owners, and their allies in sharing their passion for our agricultural heritage and conserving its future usefulness.

 

For more than 100 years, the Van Buren Bridge continues to carry traffic across the Willamette River.  The bridge embodies Corvallis' settlement and transportation history and testifies to its growth as a technological leader and river-sited, agriculture-based community.  It is the doorway to Corvallis and the living arterial of our economic and community growth.  The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) threatens the historic bridge with a contemporary replacement.  Currently PreservationWORKS! insists that ODOT respect the law, particularly Section 4(f) of the Surface Transportation Act, and the repeated choice of Corvallis to keep the bridge as a bicycle/pedestrian friendly river crossing.  See more our in our Portfolio.

 

The Henkle House, a circa-1898 Italianate structure, sat grossly neglected for decades.  When the property-owner applied to demolish the structure for new construction, the HRC and subsequently the Corvallis City Council denied their application and appeal.  In defense of Henkle House – and the city's preservation program – PreservationWORKS! stepped up, raised the funds for acquisition and purchased the  threatened resource.  This unprecedented bold move honors all of our founding purposes.  

© 2020 by PreservationWORKS
P.O. Box 1474
Corvallis, OR 97339

info@presworks.org

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