[10 on Tuesday] 10 Steps to Start Saving Places


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We’ve now shared more than 30 Tuesday toolkits on topics ranging from sustainability to social media, but we haven’t yet shared the mother of them all: Saving Places 101.

If you want to protect a place near and dear to your heart, but aren’t sure where to begin, then today’s toolkit is for you. It provides a solid framework for turning your concern for a historic spot into meaningful, lasting action. Let’s walk through the ten steps that can help make your vision of a protected place a reality.


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[10 on Tuesday] 10 Steps to Start Saving Places

  1. 1. 10 Steps to Start Saving PlacesProtect the Historic Places that Matter to You Photo courtesy Visit Hillsborough, flickr
  2. 2. Photo courtesy the_napkin, flickr1. Identify the threat.Stay alert about the status of recently vacated or soldbuildings, hearings for zone changes, plans for newtransportation routes, etc. Any one of these changes mightaffect historic resources in your area.
  3. 3. 2. Determine the property’s significance.Research the history and significance of the site. Identify anypolitical boundaries or districts that impact the property, and assessthe property’s overall condition (i.e. the extent of the threat).Contact your statewide or tribal historic preservation office for help. Photo courtesy hdes.copeland, flickr
  4. 4. 3. Connect with apreservation group.Strong, continuous, well-organized local actionis the key to successful preservation efforts. Butbefore developing your own grassrootsadvocacy group, check if any preservation-related organizations are already established inyour area. Joining forces can have severalbenefits: The existing group can provideleadership, you can fortify their ranks, and bothgroups can coordinate activities to be mostefficient and effective.Photo courtesy The City Project, flickr
  5. 5. Photo courtesy Office of Governor Patrick, flickr4. Consider non-preservation partners.Many organizations in related fields might be able to offer supportand leadership as well. For example, housingagencies, conservation groups, religious organizations, andneighborhood associations might be useful allies for your project.
  6. 6. 5. Form your own group.Look to similar communities forexamples of how they did it.Also, consider the timeframe of theissue you’re trying to address. If it’sshort-term, then an ad hoc groupcan deal with imminent problemsand disband when the issue isresolved. If it’s more long-term, consider establishing a groupwith a more formal structure thatcan continue to advocate after theinitial issue is resolved. Photo courtesy Mollusa, flickr
  7. 7. 6. Seek out high-level info & resources.In addition to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, a variety oflarge private and public sector organizations can help guide yourwork, including Preservation Action, National Park Service, andAdvisory Council on Historic Preservation. Visit their websites for moreinfo. Photo courtesy Grand Canyon NPS, flickr
  8. 8. Photo courtesy National Trust for Historic Preservation7. Define your vision.Address the following questions to help focus your work:What condition is the site or property in? How will we restoreit? What will the place be used for?
  9. 9. 8. Make a plan.Develop written goals, objectives, and a workplan for at least a one-year period. Also includeplanning for your budget and fundraisingstrategy.Photo courtesy National Trust for Historic Preservation
  10. 10. 9. Designate your property.Getting your property included in an inventoryor register, such as the National Register ofHistoric Places, state registers, and/or locallistings, can help protect it later. Theseinventories also document the history of a siteand include a description and photographs. Photo courtesy origamidon, flickr
  11. 11. 10. Keep the faith.Preservation projects take time, and possibleoutcomes run the gamut from demolition toprotection to restoration. So it’s only natural tofeel discouraged sometimes. But remember thatyour work is keeping a much-loved piece ofhistory around for future generations to enjoy --and that’s worth celebrating!Photo courtesy the_napkin, flickr
  12. 12. Ten on Tuesday features ten preservationtips each week. For more tips, visitblog.PreservationNation.org.