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Archive for the ‘Preserving history’ Category

My Camera Editorial Advisory Board comment published on March 7, 2009:

Remembering and valuing the past seems to be sticky business. The decision to move the farmhouse near Valmont Park to make way for a mountain bike park is the latest example. Jason Vogel, vice president of the Boulder Mountain Bike Alliance, said the partnership between the bike organization and Boulder was “extremely positive” until the 3-2 Landmarks Board’s decision not to move the farmhouse.

I agree with the critics. The bike alliance got ahead of itself by planning details of the park with the assumption the farmhouse would be moved. I also agree with the majority on the Landmarks Board that moving the farmhouse away from the irrigation ditch adversely affects the farmhouse’s historic and architectural value.

If the site and the farmhouse were a printed historical document, the reasoning may be more clear. With an historical document in your hands you’ve corrected the spelling and the poorly shaped letters. You’ve fixed it so people could read it with ease. All the while you tell yourself you still have an historical document. Then, you realize if you typed the text, you could send it electronically. There. It’s accessible to all.

The document is still historical, isn’t it? Not so much. The same is true for the farmhouse to a lesser degree.


Source: Daily Camera


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My Camera Editorial Advisory Board comment published on April 5, 2008, in response to the Camera’s question: The City Council voted unanimously to preserve a barn on private land under the city’s historic preservation ordinance, and another barn is also being considered for preservation under this ordinance. In contrast, the Boulder Valley School District allows historically important buildings to be demolished, remodeled beyond recognition, or redeveloped without any regard to the desires of local communities. Is this “historical landmark” designation fair to private owners who wish to maintain economic freedom over their properties? Should the BVSD be subject to the same rules as private owners, and be required to preserve historic structures if the community desires?

The red and white barn at 5653 Baseline Road is now an “individual landmark” under the city’s historic preservation ordinance. That sounds like a victory for those who remember the barn as part of a small vegetable farm after it was constructed in 1920. Now Boulder is set to have a museum piece in a housing development that could include nine homes on 2.5 acres. So much for preserving agricultural history. Why not save the chicken coop, the garage and the milk house as well and turn the whole site into a living history experience or at least have less-dense housing approved? Saving one barn is only a token at saving a window to the past.

The BVSD doesn’t seem to get preserving history as viewed through its treatment of Louisville Middle School’s facade and Casey Middle School. Here are big structures with lots of history related to them. In the case of the Louisville school’s facade, the community loses tremendous historical and community identity with its demolition. What a shame.

It’s unfair the historical landmark of the barn takes away rights of the property owner and that the school district can take away a community’s landmark.


Source: Daily Camera


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