Beaufort News

Historic Beaufort home sites focus of preservationist training week

This house on Duke Street has been identified as a significant property to preserve.
This house on Duke Street has been identified as a significant property to preserve. File, The Beaufort Gazette

Call it "preservation bootcamp."

For one week in June, more than two dozen preservationists from across the country will put Beaufort under a microscope, using the city and its historic buildings for practical application of the lessons they learn in workshops.

"At the end of the day, we will have brought in 25 preservationists from around the country who bring different skill sets and different levels of expertise that we probably wouldn't have been able to do without this training program," Historic Beaufort Foundation executive director Julie Good said.

The Preservation Leadership Training Capstone Experience runs June 3 to 8. Four local residents -- Good, City Councilman Mike McFee, Historic Review Board member Erica Dickerson and Main Street Beaufort, USA, executive director LaNelle Fabian -- are also participating.

Run by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the workshop is designed to connect preservationists, local officials and nonprofits across the nation and share tips and tools for tackling the variety of issues they might encounter. The hands-on projects are not only a practical way to do that, but it gives a boost to the host city.

Specific projects this year are 702 Duke St., a historic home; 509 Carteret St., the former Von Harten building; and the 1400 block of Bladen Street, which includes the former Frogmore Lodge.

The Duke Street building and the Frogmore Lodge have been identified as significant properties to preserve, but no plans have been made for either. Plans are in the works to turn the Von Harten building into a bakery. The building that now houses Lowcountry Produce was part of Good's original proposal to entice the National Trust to Beaufort.

"The beauty of this program is, maybe we can come up with some incentives that can help move (the Von Harten building) project along faster," she said. "This is designed to support work that is already happening now. It's not to step on anybody's toes."

After last year's workshop, the preservationists had a detailed plan for Tulsa, Okla., that even suggested rent prices for apartments and businesses and identified tax incentives and credits and grant opportunities.

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