N.H. Preservation Alliance Announces 11 Awards Recognizes Preservation of Rare Resources, Community Gathering Places and Community Development Successes that help define New Hampshire
A gas station-turned-coffee shop in Lebanon and a Catholic church-turned-condominiums in Concord; stewardship of the oldest timber framed house in New Hampshire; restoration of a shed in Freedom that housed rollers used to flatten snow on roads before plows; rehabilitation of Francestown’s 1847 town hall; and restoration of a significant cast iron fence around a churchyard in Holderness, are some of this year’s Preservation Achievement Award winners. The common thread in the eleven 2018 awards, according to the Preservation Alliance’s executive director Jennifer Goodman, is “high-quality investments that benefit New Hampshire citizens, and stimulate additional community development.” “The projects are all very complex,” she added, and “tenacity and creativity are key ingredients in their success.”
Noting varied and important projects throughout the state, the N.H. Preservation Alliance announced these eleven achievement awards for outstanding historic preservation activity on May 8 in a ceremony in Concord. The projects breathe new life into communities across the state, and include preservation of rare and iconic properties:
- Ashland Historical Society for the rescue of the c. 1800 Reuben Whitten House. Whitten is credited with helping feed townspeople in 1816, known as the year without a summer. Largely volunteer effort.
- Town of Freedom for restoration of the Freedom Roller Shed. Strong local effort for rare building type that used to house snow roller and other equipment. In village center.
- NH Department of Transportation for stewardship of the 1817 New Ipswich High Bridge and compatible new construction. New steel span above oldest and tallest stone arched bridge in New Hampshire in historic mill village. Enhances preservation of historic bridge.
- Historic New England for restoration and stewardship of the 1664 Jackson House, Portsmouth, the oldest existing timber framed structure in New Hampshire. Sensitive and effective bracing of frame and grading work to correct water infiltration problems completed with significant investment in archeological analysis.
Three winners were recognized for their stewardship of significant community assets and gathering places:
- Trinity Churchyard Cemetery Association for the restoration of the Trinity Cemetery fence, Holderness. A high-quality effort with important attention to minimizing ground disturbance and preserving a frequently-lost feature (cast iron fence).
- Town of Francestown for the rehabilitation of Francestown Town Hall. Decade-long rehabilitation project for 1847 building after being closed due to code issues.
- Town of Littleton for stewardship of the Littleton Community Center. Major commitment to Seven to Save-listed 1884 Queen Anne landmark that stands on Main Street, that included new roof, electrical and other systems work, removal of vinyl siding and repair and painting of clapboards.
Four winners demonstrated excellence in large- and small-scale community development projects:
- CATCH Neighborhood Housing for the rehabilitation and adaptive use of Franklin Power & Light. Major rehabilitation of derelict mill building for workforce housing in downtown.
- Jonathan Chorlian for the rescue and adaptive use of the Sacred Heart Church for Bienvenue Condominiums, Concord. Creative solution for major landmark at risk.
- One Park North Street for the rehabilitation and adaptive use of Lucky’s Coffee Garage, Lebanon. High-quality re-use of former garage in downtown.
- City of Rochester for the rehabilitation of the Rochester City Hall Annex. Significant reinvestment in a “remuddled” building with major advocacy from local historic district commission.
“We welcome this opportunity to recognize outstanding projects while hopefully inspiring others,” said Goodman. “These are the kinds of places we can’t imagine New Hampshire without,” she said, “and we want to recognize the people who have worked to save and revive these landmarks.” It is the Alliance’s 29th year of honoring preservation achievement.
Goodman noted that the Littleton project had been on the Alliance’s Seven to Save list of endangered properties in the past, and emphasized the tenacity of the private developers and community advocates as well as the importance of investments by the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) in four of the projects and the Conservation & Heritage License Plate Program (Moose Plate) for two. Support from the Community Development Finance Authority and federal historic preservation tax credits were instrumental in others.
Generous program sponsors include: The Common Man Family of Restaurants, Ingram Construction Corporation, Sheehan Phinney, H.L. Turner Group, Inc., Milestone Engineering & Construction, Inc., The Duprey Companies, and The Rowley Agency. Also CMK Architects, D.E.W. Construction Corp., Granite State Plumbing and Heating, LLC, Kas-Bar Realty, Inc., Lavallee Brensinger Architects, Scully Architects, Studio Nexus Architects & Planners, TF Moran, Inc., Turnstone Corporation, WOODS & Co. Civil Engineering, Warrenstreet Architects and Yeaton Associates.
The New Hampshire Preservation Alliance supports and encourages the revitalization and protection of historic buildings and places which strengthens communities and local economies.
Current priorities include providing assistance to community leaders, helping owners of long-held family farms and promoting the use of easements, barn preservation and tax incentives.