| Preservation Trust of Vermont News|
Vermont Marble Museum Update
Located in Proctor, Vermont, The Vermont Marble Museum tells the story of what was once the largest marble company in the world and one of Vermont's most important industries.
In the spring of 2012, after many years of operations, the current owners decided to close the Museum and sell the collection. The Preservation Trust stepped in, hoping to raise enough money to purchase the entire operation with the ultimate goal of keeping the collection intact and finding a new non-profit owner to run the museum in its current location in Proctor. When one major grant proposal was turned down, the Trust and local partners were unable to purchase the extensive paper archive and stone library. These are now going to be sold to a university located in the northeast.
As of December 31, 2012, the Preservation Trust had successfully raised $250,000 to complete Phase I of the project, taking a significant step forward on the path to saving this irreplaceable piece of our heritage. This phase includes the acquisition of the museum collection and displays, including the 2000+ rare glass plate negative collection, and the gift shop.
The Preservation Trust is now beginning Phase II which includes raising funds for the acquisition of the museum building. To date, we have raised $125,000 of the total $480,000 needed towards this effort, thanks largely to a commitment from the owners and the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board. We also need to raise additional funds for insurance, engineering expenses, planning costs, interest expense and rehabilitation work on the building. We are hopeful that we can complete this phase by the end 2013. Additionally, we are actively seeking a new non-profit owner and operator for the museum.
The Trust is also beginning a process of engaging and involving the community to gather thoughts, ideas and energy to the future of the Marble Museum. In late February, the Trust held two very successful community meetings in Proctor. For more information, see this article from the Rutland Herald...
Barnard General Store, Barnard, VT
When the current owners closed the store in the summer of 2012, a group of local citizens took action to attempt to keep it as a local store and meeting place. The Preservation Trust acquired an option while they worked to raise money to purchase the building.
A local community group, the Barnard Community Trust, purchased the store for $500,000 in late January. They are keeping the space open during this transition period to serve as a community gathering place by offering coffee and baked goods every weekday morning and are now hoping to have the store reopen in April 2013.
2013 Grand Isle Lake House Retreats
The Preservation Trust of Vermont announces the 2013 Grand Isle Lake House Retreats. The Retreats are an opportunity for training, peer-to-peer support, and conversations with specialists to help solve problems and move historic preservation and community development projects along their timeline.
May 6-7: Designated Village Center
June 24-25: Arts and Community Development Projects
August 12-13: Navigating Challenging Times
September 16-17: Energy-Saving Retrofits for Historic Buildings
September 18-19: Designated Downtown (date tentative)
October 7-8: Historic Preservation and Community Development
Registration information will be available soon via this newsletter and the Preservation Trust website. For more information, please contact Ann Cousins at email@example.com
Preservation and Downtown ConferenceJune 7, Barre, VT
Mark your calendar's for this year's annual Historic Preservation and Downtown Conference on Friday June 7th in Barre, Vermont. More information will be distributed through this newsletter. If you have questions, please contact Leanne Tingay at the Vermont Downtown Program Leanne.Tingay@state.vt.us
Preservation and Elementary Education
Teachers at the Union Street Elementary School in Springfield brought preservation into the fourth grade classroom with a cross-discipline study of bridges and poetry, and the story of the now famous Bartonsville Bridge and Tropical Storm Irene. See WCAX's inspiring coverage of the story
How has your community brought preservation into the classroom? Let us know! firstname.lastname@example.org
Robert Sincerbeaux Fund Grants
The Preservation Trust of Vermont provides matching grants up to $500 to municipalities and community organizations for
hiring consultants to provide technical assistance for preservation projects. Eligible activities may include hiring a preservation architect or contractor to do a building condition assessment, organizational development, project planning, fundraising consultation, feasibility assessment, and other project development activities. Application is rolling and is initiated by contacting a Preservation Trust Field Service Representative. Please contact Ann Cousins for more information: email@example.com.
The following organizations or individuals were awarded RSF Grants in 2012:
Bloomfield Town Hall
Breadloaf, Inc. for Castleton Planning
Church St. Marketplace-City of Burlington, Historic Marker for Marketplace
Fairfield Community Center
First Universalist Society of Hartland
Hartford Historical Society, Inc., Garipay Building
Haskell Free Library, Inc.
Housing Trust of Rutland County, Inc. Town of Chester
Ilsley Public Library, Middlebury
Montgomery Community Church
Norwich Congregational Church
Norwich Historical Society
Norwich Public Library Association
Old Goshen Church
Peacham Cafe Group LLC
Perkinsville Grange Building
Putney Historical Society, Inc.
Richmond Historical Society
Root District Game Club
St. Andrew's Church
St. John's Episcopal Church, Highgate Springs
Stevens & Associates, P.C., Guilford Country Store
Stowe Land Trust
Sustainable Valley Group, Inc., Bellows Falls
Tarrant, Gillies, Merriman & Richardson for Bartel's Lodge, Pownal
The Townsend Church
Town of Bakersfield
Town of Goshen
Town of Jericho
Town of Middletown Springs Municipal Bldg
Town of Norwich
Town of South Hero, Granny's Attic
Town of Strafford
Town of Swanton
Unitarian Church of Montpelier
Upper Valley Community Grange
Vermont Caribbean Institute, Building Trades Educational Support
Vermont Historical Society
Vermont Humanities Counci
Vermont Interfaith Power and Light
West River Community Project Co.
Whiting Library, Chester
Windham & Windsor Housing Trust
Barn Assessment Grants
In Partnership with the Burlington Free Press and the Gannett Foundation, the Preservation Trust of Vermont provides grants to help with condition assessments for historic barns. The planning grants are available to offset the cost of a qualified contractor to evaluate the condition of an historic barn and make recommendations for its care. For more information, please contact Eric Gilbertson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brennan Barn, Williston
Graham Barn, Woodbury
La Freniere Barns, Bolton
LaCroix Barn, Moretown
Lidback Barn, Westmore
Varney Barn, Charlotte
Vermont Department of Corrections for Painting and Training
| Around the State|
A Building History of Northern New England
March 16th 10am - Noon, The Windham Antique Center, 5 The Square, Bellows Falls, VT
Does your old house have a story to tell? Have you ever wondered how your home was built? Why a building looks the way it does, or how to date a structure?
To learn more about the evolution of buildings in Northern New England, come to this free talk by author and NH State Architectural Historian James Garvin. In addition to his 2001 book "A Building History of Northern New England", James has written or edited almost 200 National Register nominations, and prepared over 150 reports on historic buildings. This is an excellent opportunity to gain a greater understanding of architecture, especially as a prelude to preservation or restoration projects.
Sponsored by: The Rockingham Historical Commission, The Vermont Division for Historic Preservation, The National Park Service & The Windham Antique Center
Vermont Downtown Awards, Nominations Being Accepted
It is time once again to nominate your favorite projects or people for the Vermont Downtown Awards.
This award is open to both State Designated Downtowns or Village Centers...not sure if your community is state designated then click this here to find out. The project or effort must have taken place within the community's downtown district.
Anyone or any organization can nominate a project or volunteer in various categories such as best public improvement project, best building fašade or building renovation, best special event, best downtown business or even Volunteer of the year - a complete list of the categories and criteria can be e-mailed to you from Leanne Tingay, Vermont Downtown Program State Coordinator by e-mailing her at Leanne.email@example.com or calling 828-3220.
Deadline for submissions is Monday, April 1st by 4:30 p.m.
Click here for more information and a nomination application.
1879 Building St. Johnsbury
On Monday December 23, 2013, an electrical short caused a major fire in the 1879 Building on Railroad Avenue in St. Johnsbury. The following day, PTV Field Service Representative Eric Gilbertson visited the site to examine the condition of the building and see what could be done to prevent the demolition of this historic piece of the Railroad Avenue streetscape.
With the support of the owner Bruno Ravel, Fire Chief Troy Ruggles, and Scott Beck from the Chamber of Commerce, The Preservation Trust engaged David Boehm from Engineering Ventures to provide a conditions assessment and treatment plan for the building. Boehm determined that the building was generally in stable condition with the major damage on the third floor and roof. The report also gave some general cost figures for repairs.
A subsequent meeting attended by 20 people from a number of different agencies might have resulted in demolition; instead, with the report in hand, the meeting was optimistic and a plan was set in motion for rehabilitation of the building.
Black River Design from Montpelier is currently developing plans to use the upper floors for market rate housing using both State and Federal Tax Credits. A rear addition will connect the 1879 building to the neighboring building on the south which will provide elevator access to both buildings.
Repairs began in early February, about six weeks after the fire.
Preservation in Progress: The Meeting House on the Green, East Fairfield, VT
Residents of East Fairfield, Vermont are actively involved in helping to preserve and redefine the white church in the center of the village, also known as The Meeting House on the Green. Though it is a slow-going endeavor, and in the end the community feels they'll have something great: not only an historic building preserved for future generations, but also a vibrant, public venue for weddings, concerts, school performances, lectures, movie series, art shows, and more. Residents believe that the health and strength of a community is directly connected to the preservation of its historic buildings, and this one has been at the hub of village life for over 130 years.
The first phase of the project involves making repairs to stabilize the building. Immediately, they need to raise some funds to replace a small roof section over the pump organ, upgrade the electrical system, remove old oil tanks, furnace, and an unused chimney, and buy basic insurance coverage. The Preservation Trust of Vermont has pledged $5,000 to the project in a matching grant. The community is the process of raising the match.
Please consider making a tax deductible donation in any amount, and your donation will be doubled! You can donate securely on the DONATE page of the www.meetinghouseonthegreen.com
, or mail your check (or dollar bill!) to Meeting House on the Green, The Fairfield Community Center, Box 16, East Fairfield, VT 05448. And if you'd like to be part of this exciting adventure, call Nancy Shaw at 802-827-6626.
And finally, mark your calendars for the weekend of June 22/23 - a big OPEN HOUSE with music, wood-fired pizza, and the grand tour of the Meeting House. Might even ring the bell! Hope to see you there!
May 5-10: Hands-On Historic Preservation
Jamie Duggan, Yestermorrow Design/Build School in Warren, VT
Older homes are typically built using materials and techniques not readily found in contemporary construction. All too often, character-defining features, uncommon materials and exceptional craftsmanship are lost to deterioration or removal when resolving maintenance and repair dilemmas. This workshop will help owners, maintenance personnel, property managers, general contractors, and anyone involved in the stewardship of older buildings to make informed decisions on the job. Through lectures and site visits, students will learn what to look for when assessing the condition of a structure, as well as how to prioritize their work, establish routine maintenance programs, and find help for projects beyond their capacity. Students will also work with the materials, tools and techniques used to preserve traditional buildings via skill-building activities, demonstrations and hands-on in-situ repairs, including masonry, plastering, structural repair, and windows.
| National News|
Hart Family Fund
The 5/1/2013 deadline for grants to Hart Family Fund for Small Towns is rapidly approaching!
Grants from the Hart Family Fund for Small Towns are intended to encourage preservation at the local level by providing seed money for preservation projects in small towns. Only proposals from towns with populations of 5,000 or less are considered under this fund. Click here for more information.
Nominations Sought for the 2013 Richard H. Driehaus National Preservation Awards
Each year the National Trust for Historic Preservation celebrates the best of preservation by presenting the Richard H. Driehaus National Preservation Awards. We invite you to nominate a deserving individual, organization, agency, or project for a National Preservation Award in one of the following categories:
- National Preservation Honor Awards
- American Express Aspire Award: Recognizing Emerging Leaders in Preservation
- Trustees' Award for Organizational Excellence
- NTHP/ACHP Award for Federal Partnerships in Historic Preservation
- NTHP/HUD Secretary's Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation
- Peter H. Brink Award for Individual Achievement
- Louise du Pont Crowninshield Award
Go to www.preservationnation.org/awards to access the 2013 nomination information and view video highlights of last year's award winners. For further information, please call 202.588.6315 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The nomination deadline for all awards is March 8, 2013.
Preservation and Restoration Books from W.W. Norton & Co., Inc. Publishers
W. W. Norton & Company, the oldest and largest publishing house owned wholly by its employees, strives to carry out the imperative of its founder to "publish books not for a single season, but for the years" in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, college textbooks, cookbooks, art books and professional books.
Norton Architecture & Design Books is proud to present recent award winners from its Historic Preservation Bookshelf: Saving Wright, Historical Building Construction, Second Edition, The Future of the Past, and Buildings, Landscapes, and Memory. Whether you're a professor looking for that perfect classroom text, or a professional about to embark on a renovation, these lauded books and authors will provide the much-needed guidance you're looking for.
Order by April 15, 2013 for 20% off the list price by entering promotion code PRESERVE1 during checkout!
| Wal-Mart, Sprawl and Vermont|
Vermont's often contentious relationship with the developers of Wal-Mart and other box stores continues.
We at the Preservation Trust of Vermont understand that the people of Vermont need access to affordable goods, and for years we have been advocating appropriately scaled stores in downtown locations. We were instrumental in the downtown Rutland WM, and proposed downtown solutions for both St. Albans City and Newport
And yet, the fight goes on, and sometimes not always in our favor. Here is a sampling of recent media about Wal-Mart, Dollar General, our communities, our leadership and more.
Wal-Mart Coming to the Northeast Kingdom
From the Burlington Free Press, by Dan D'Ambrosio, 1/15/2013
The good economic news just keeps coming for the Northeast Kingdom, says the governor. First it was Jay Peak co-owner Bill Stenger's announcement in the fall that he would bring $600 million of investment and 10,000 jobs to the area over the next several years.
Now, Walmart is coming to town.
Gov. Peter Shumlin made the announcement Tuesday in a field near where the new store would be, on U.S. 5 in Derby, just over the Newport line.
In a telephone interview with the Burlington Free Press, Shumlin said Walmart's coming to Derby is good news for an area that traditionally has suffered higher unemployment rates than the rest of the state, but he sounded a note of caution on the political front.
"I'm hopeful it won't be greeted with lots of opposition," Shumlin said. "There's very little opposition in the Kingdom. The question is whether forces from outside the Kingdom will get involved."Read More...
Margolis: Walmart's Low-cost Goods Come at a High Price
From Vermont Digger, by Jon Margolis, January 22, 2013
The Great Northeast Kingdom underwear hoax returned to Vermont last week.
The hoaxer-in-chief was Gov. Peter Shumlin. Speaking at the ceremonial opening of what will be (the permit process consenting) a new Walmart store in Derby up near the Canadian border, Shumlin noted with pleasure that when the store opens, the folks in the Kingdom will no longer have to trek all the way to New Hampshire to buy underwear.
Vermont Governor Takes Heat for Warming Up To Wal-Mart
From The Huffington post, by Al Norman, 01/26/2013
Environmentalists in New England were stunned recently when Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin publicly embraced a proposed Wal-Mart superstore as "good news" for his state.
Shumlin joins ranks with former Vermont Governor, Republican Jim Douglas, who stumped at a pro Wal-Mart rally in St. Albans, Vermont in January of 2010 -- cheerleading for the same developer who now has Governor Shumlin at his side.
This is the same Shumlin who has called for the shut-down of an aging nuclear power plant in southern Vermont, and described the power plant's owner, Entergy, as "not trustworthy."
Governor Shumlin Talks about the Importance of Downtowns at the Statewide Conference in Wilmington
From the Historic Preservation and Downtown Conference in Wilmington, Vermont, June 2012
Fast forward to...
3:15 for thoughts about the importance of downtowns and village centers
5:15 "Big Boxes are Destroying Our Downtowns"
7:10 "We are Going to Make it Tougher for Big Boxes to Develop Here..."
Groups Reach Tentative Agreement to Drop Walmart Appeals
Bennington Banner, by Patrick McArdle
The plan to replace Walmart in Bennington with a "super store" more than twice the size of the existing store took a step forward last week when a tentative agreement was reached to settle the appeals made against the project by the Vermont Natural Resources Council and a local citizens group.
A stipulation of dismissal submitted to the Vermont Environmental Court on Feb. 13 by Jamey Fidel, general counsel for the Vermont Natural Resources Council, or VNRC. A letter accompanying the stipulation said the appeals were being dropped by the VNRC and the Citizens for a Greater Bennington, a citizens group that had also opposed the project.
The Era of Giant Chain Stores Is Over -- And They've Ruined America
From The Huffington Post, by James Howard Kunstler, 2/19/2013
Back in the day when big box retail started to explode upon the American landscape like a raging economic scrofula, I attended many a town planning board meeting where the pro and con factions faced off over the permitting hurdle.
The meetings were often raucous and wrathful and almost all the time the pro forces won -- for the excellent reason that they were funded and organized by the chain stores themselves (in an early demonstration of the new axioms that money-is-speech and corporations are people, too!).
How Wal-Mart is Devouring Our Food Systems (Infographic)
From the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, by Stacy Mitchell, December 1, 2012
Walmart now captures $1 of every $4 Americans spend on groceries. It's on track to claim one-third of food sales within five years. Here's a look at how Walmart has dramatically altered the food system - triggering massive consolidation, driving down prices to farmers, and leaving more families struggling to afford healthy food.
Dollar General gets Act 250 approval, opponents will appeal
From the Rutland Herald, By Christian Avard, February 28,2013
The District 2 Environmental Commission approved a land-use permit for a Dollar General Store in Chester on Wednesday.
According to the ruling, the permit authorized the Zaremba Group of Lakewood, Ohio, to build a 9,100-square-foot retail store on two lots consisting of 10 acres combined. The proposed site will be at 319 South Main St. in Chester.
The developer also obtained a conditional-use permit from the town's Development Review Board last April and now has the green light to begin construction, pending an appeal from local opponents.
Shawn Cunningham of Smart Growth Chester, a local group fighting the proposed Dollar General Store, said the developer should plan on an appeal of both the state and local permits.
| In the Media|
Can Hundreds of Postcards Save a Vermont Post Office?
From WCAX, Burlington
Watch for the chickens!
Cavendish Considers Solzhenitsyn Exhibit
From Vermont Public Radio, Steve Zind, March 1, 2013
Cavendish voters in will take up a town meeting article on whether the town should assume ownership of an historic stone church. If they approve, the building will house an exhibit honoring author and Nobel laureate Alexander Solzhenitsyn who spent 18 years in Cavendish.
Solzhenitsyn arrived in Cavendish in 1977 and stayed for 18 years before returning to his native Russia where he died in 2008. The house he lived in is still occupied by his son Ignat and his family. There is no public site that commemorates the years the writer and human rights activist spent in the small community.
Oldcastle Theatre Company Moving the Main Street, Bennington
From VT Digger and the Bennington Banner, Tele Halkias, December 31, 2012
For Oldcastle Theatre Company and its founding director Eric Peterson, the start of a new season is a cause for celebration and reflection, particularly with how tough the economy has been on small, professional theaters throughout Vermont. Recently, however, with the opening of the musical "Northern Boulevard," there was an extra ingredient mixed in: A new permanent home in downtown Bennington with state of the art design housed in the old Knights of Columbus building on Main Street.
Fresh Outlooks for a Pair of Key White River Junction Buildings
From The Valley News, Job Wolper, December 24, 2012
A pair of South Main Street buildings will soon be getting two very different kinds of improvements. While the people behind the recently reopened Tupelo Music Hall are expanding the venue's hours to become a more full-fledged function hall, a new owner has purchased the American Legion Hall, which was recently made vacant. Earlier this month Matt Bucy, who owns the Tip Top Media and Arts Building, purchased the former Hartford Post 26, which had its final meeting in the space just a few weeks ago.
Searching for Vermont
From the Third Coast Digest Traveler, Rich Hertek, January 27, 2013
For me, passing through New Hampshire and crossing into Vermont was always a bit like going through the wardrobe in The Chronicles of Narnia. I had lived in Boston for roughly 15 years. Owned a weekend place in Vermont. And every time I crossed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial bridge, spanning the Connecticut River at West Lebanon, something transformative happened. Almost as if I had been granted access to a place where my sins and worries couldn't follow.
Why that was, I don't know. But I'm back, hoping to find out. My journey starts in Burlington.
Poultney's Journal Press Building:
From thriving business center to thriving artist colony
From the Rutland Herald Article published Feb 7, 2013, by Jim Lowe
Poultney's Journal Press Building has been something of a community center since it was erected in 1908, but its initial owners could hardly have imagined the arts center it has become. Retail stores continue to occupy the ground floor, but upstairs is a creative new world.
"When you enter the door under the sign boldly proclaiming Poultney Small Business Center you will see a list pointing to an interesting group of tenants occupying the second and third floors of the building as well as the basement," explained artist Richard Weis, the building's self-assigned champion.
Country Store to Host Cafe, Farmers Market
From the Brattleboro Reformer published 2/7/2013, by MIKE FAHER / Reformer Staff
Big things are happening at the West Townshend Country Store.
First, a renovation project is substantially complete at the 165-year-old building, and there is a search under way for a manager for the cafe/local food market, thrift store and CSA headquartered there.
Also, organizers have announced that the Townshend Farmers Market will move to the country store this summer.
It's all part of a volunteer-driven vision to transform the Route 30 building into a hub for food and cultural resources.
Vital Rokeby Museum Building Completed; Key Exhibit Next
From the Addison Independent, By Andy Kirkaldy November 21, 2012
After more than a decade of planning and effort and a few setbacks along the way, the 13-year-old dreams for Ferrisburgh's Rokeby Museum to become a major Underground Railroad history site and dramatically expand its ability to handle visitors is a giant step closer to reality.
Brandon general contractor Naylor & Breen Builders recently finished a two-story, roughly $1.5 million visitor center on the Route 7 site that will go by the name the Rokeby Museum Underground Railroad Education Center.
The building, which has a footprint of 2,500 square feet, takes advantage of the terrain to have ground-level entrances on both floors, and internally there is an elevator as well as a stairway, plus two handicap-accessible bathrooms.
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