Saturday, March 31, 2007

This day in history

March 31, 1889 : Eiffel Tower Opens. In 1889, to honor the centenary of the French Revolution, the French government planned an international exposition and announced a design competition for a monument to be built on the Champ-de-Mars in central Paris. Out of more than 100 designs submitted, the Centennial Committee chose Eiffel's plan of an open-lattice wrought-iron tower that would reach almost 1,000 feet above Paris and be the world's tallest man-made structure. Eiffel, a noted bridge builder, was a master of metal construction and designed the framework of the Statue of Liberty that had recently been erected in New York Harbor.

Eiffel's tower was greeted with skepticism from critics who argued that it would be structurally unsound, and indignation from others who thought it would be an eyesore in the heart of Paris. Unperturbed, Eiffel completed his great tower under budget in just two years. Only one worker lost his life during construction, which at the time was a remarkably low casualty number for a project of that magnitude. The light, airy structure was by all accounts a technological wonder and within a few decades came to be regarded as an architectural masterpiece. The Eiffel Tower is 984 feet tall and consists of an iron framework supported on four masonry piers, from which rise four columns that unite to form a single vertical tower. In early May, the Paris International Exposition opened, and the tower served as the entrance gateway to the giant fair.

The Eiffel Tower remained the world's tallest man-made structure until the completion of the Chrysler Building in New York in 1930. Incredibly, the Eiffel Tower was almost demolished when the International Exposition's 20-year lease on the land expired in 1909, but its value as an antenna for radio transmission saved it. It remains largely unchanged today and is one of the world's premier tourist attractions.

Historic downtown Phoenix - a 1.5 mile self-guided walking tour

[Source: Barbara Yost, Arizona Republic] -- In 1867, the U.S. General Land Office began surveying Arizona and the Salt River Valley into townships, and by 1870 the location of Phoenix was selected and named. Early Phoenix desert was surrounded by irrigated farmland, which used a canal system (similar to prehistoric Hohokam canals) built between 1867-1885. This canal system allowed homesteaders, businessmen, investors and promoters to reclaim the desert and transformed it into fields of alfalfa, grains, vegetables and, eventually, citrus and cotton. Because the water supply was unpredictable in 1911, Roosevelt Dam was built to ensure a consistent supply. By the end of the first decade of the 20th century, Phoenix had railroad connections to two transcontinental lines and had become a major distribution center, not only for agriculture but for mining and manufacturing, too. Downtown Phoenix kept its 1920s identity well into the late 1960s, when the face of the city changed with the construction of office towers in the central core. Fortunately, many of the key commercial and civic buildings from the 1920s remain.

1. Fry Building, northwest corner of Second and Washington streets - is the earliest known intact commercial building in Phoenix. This two-story building was built in 1885. In 1904, the north addition of the Fry Building was erected and the storefronts were remodeled in 1950.

2. Hanny’s Building, 44 N. First St. - was built in 1947 by Vic Hanny, a local businessman. This store brought the International/Moderate Style influence to Phoenix and sparked a major face lift in the downtown area.

3. Professional Building, 137 N. Central Ave. - provided centrally located medical offices for the first time in Phoenix. It was built in 1931. This is the largest limestone-sheathed building in Arizona and is an Art Deco/Moderne Style skyscraper. The top story was added in 1958.

Getting started: A Walking Tour of Historic Downtown Phoenix is published by the Historic Preservation Office of the City of Phoenix, Neighborhood Services Department. Phone: (602) 261-8699. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

National Geographic debits Arizona MapGuide

National Geographic is releasing a Geotourism MapGuide on the Arizona-Sonora desert region this weekend. The map pinpoints distinctive destinations on both sides of the border that follow the principles of geotourism. In a grassroots effort, residents nominated the attractions to the Arizona and Sonora offices of tourism for a sort of insider's guide. Geotourism refers to tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place, including its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage and residents' well-being. The map will be launched at the Tubac Art Walk at the Tubac Center for the Arts.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Magnetic Observatory should be preserved

[Source: Ken Scoville, Daily Star] -- It is a sad irony that the city of Tucson is proposing the demolition of a unique cultural resource, the United States Magnetic Observatory at Udall Park. The park honors Congressman Morris Udall's 30 years of service to the community, and Udall's name is synonymous with conservation of the nation's natural environment and cultural resources. Along with his brother Stewart, the Udalls realized the lasting value of conservation that continues to be missed by the powers that be within the city of Tucson. The observatory was originally established in 1909 to record fluctuations in the Earth's magnetic field. Later, a seismographic station was installed. In the late 1920s and early 1930s, the buildings surviving today were constructed for residences and research, with some of the construction techniques unique in the nation.

In the early 20th century, Tucson became a center for scientific research with the Steward Observatory, the Desert Laboratory and the Magnetic Observatory. The research done at these facilities and the remaining buildings are part of our proud heritage and are primary resources to the history of Tucson and the nation. The nature of the political world allows the city of Tucson to designate the Magnetic Observatory for demolition because of the deteriorated condition of the buildings and the environmental issues at the site. It appears that some of environmental concerns are a result of procedures for waste disposal while the facility was in use. The decade of neglect of the complex since 1995 when it came under the city's "stewardship" certainly hasn't helped preservation. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Did you know. . .

[Source: Jennifer Duffy, Daily Star] -- The Hualapai and Havasupai tribes inhabit the Grand Canyon today and are believed to be descendants of the Cerbat tribe. Those ancestors moved to the Grand Canyon in about A.D. 1250 after the Puebloan Indians (who are now known as the Hopi, Zuni and other tribes) left the Canyon to inhabit other parts of the Southwest, according to Ellen Brennan, acting archaeologist at Grand Canyon National Park. Part of a hunter-gatherer society, they lived off wild game, cactus fruit, roots, berries and food they raised in gardens. They made sophisticated pottery for carrying water, cooking and storing food. The Hopi would come to the Canyon from the Black Mesa area, Brennan said, to trade.

The Hualapai: The word Hualapai means "people of the tall pine"(pai means "people"), said Loretta Jackson-Kelly, the historic preservation officer for the Hualapai Tribe. According to their beliefs, they were created at what they call Spirit Mountain, a sacred spot, Jackson-Kelly said. Traditional dress for the Hualapai is clothing from deer- and rabbit skin and dresses woven with juniper bark. The headdresses, which only a chieftan would wear, were made from eagle and white-tailed hawk feathers. The reservation, covering about 992,000 acres of barren plains to forests in Northwestern Arizona, was created in 1883. Peach Springs, named after the peach trees that grew at nearby springs, is the capital. There are about 2,000 people in the tribe.

The Havasupai: The Havasupai, also called Havasu 'Baaja and "people of the blue-green water," number 650, and about 450 live in the tribal center, Supai, a village in the Western Grand Canyon that is accessible only by foot, horseback or helicopter. Havasupai is the official — and preferred — language. English is spoken, too. Before the reservation was established in 1882, the tribe was made up of hunters and gatherers who would live on the plateau regions in the fall and winter and in the Canyon in the spring and summer. The three sets of waterfalls that line Havasu Creek in the Canyon have made the reservation a popular tourist destination for campers and hikers.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Dean Knuth.]

Thursday, March 29, 2007

NPI conflict resolution seminar

The National Preservation Institute, a nonprofit organization founded in 1980, educates those involved in the management, preservation, and stewardship of our cultural heritage. The 2007 National Preservation Institute seminar schedule is now available online. The 2007 NPI News Release includes the calendar and seminar descriptions . Advance registration rate available through April 4, 2007.

"Conflict Resolution and Negotiation Tools for Cultural and Natural Resource Projects." Phoenix, AZ — May 15-17, 2007 in cooperation with the Public History Program, Department of History, Arizona State University, the State Historic Preservation Office, Arizona State Parks, and the University of Virginia, Institute for Environmental Negotiation. Laws and regulations related to cultural and natural resources often require participatory processes that can be mired in conflict and misunderstanding. Projects frequently can be more effectively navigated when stakeholders use collaborative processes to identify and resolve problems during consultation. Learn how to design and manage a collaborative process and how to use a range of tools associated with negotiation and consensus building through participatory role-plays, interactive exercises, and case studies. An agenda is available online.

Instructor: Tanya Denckla Cobb, senior associate, University of Virginia Institute f or Environmental Negotiation; certified mediator working with community and environmental issues, including facility siting, land use planning, natural resource protection, and heritage preservation.

Registration. A registration form is available online. The advance registration rate is valid until April 4 — $525 (3 days). The regular registration rate after that date is $575. Questions? Please contact the National Preservation Institute, P.O. Box 1702, Alexandria, VA 22313, 703/765-0100;;

That's ancient history

[Source: Emily Seftel, Arizona Republic] -- In a city where you're practically a native if you moved here before 1990, where historical neighborhoods are mere decades old, you can be excused for thinking the Valley lacks true historical context. But if you know where to look, the area has roots that go back not hundreds, but thousands of years. And you'll find that evidence just a few miles east of downtown Phoenix at Pueblo Grande Museum. The archaeological site and museum is dedicated to preserving and interpreting the culture of the Hohokam, who lived in the Salt River Valley for more than 1,000 years, then packed up and left. An ancient platform mound dominates the grounds. At one time the mound stood more than 25 feet tall and was encircled by an 8-foot-tall adobe wall. Visitors can go to the top to see rooms and walls uncovered through excavations and learn more about Hohokam life and culture.

On a recent Thursday morning, the museum was almost empty, save for a couple of dozen schoolchildren on a field trip. "Isn't it incredible that this is in the middle of the city?" said one chaperone, gesturing toward the mound. "I never knew about this." That's a common reaction, says Renee Aguilar, who works for visitor services. As a stop for commercial tours, the museum attracts plenty of out-of-town visitors. But residents are often surprised to learn of it. "It's the most common thing we hear - 'I've lived here 20, 30, 40 years and never knew this was here,' " Aguilar said. "Or people say they drive by all the time and never noticed it. They're surprised at what's here." [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Centennial anniversary for Globe

Globe, Arizona Celebrates Centennial Anniversary: The stage is set and the big event is coming together, as the City of Globe prepares to celebrate 100 years of growth since its incorporation in 1907. The Globe Centennial Steering Committee has been working for two years and they are seeing their work blossom as the History of Globe, Arizona book is now on sale at local stores, and plans for the 10-day celebration are coming together. [Photo source: Tom Berens].

Some find streetcar desirable, even at $25M a mile

[Source: Garry Duffy] -- Tucson's modern streetcar system, at $25 million a mile, will be an expensive experiment in spurring increased transit use and downtown redevelopment. Planned for a 2010 start on a four-mile route from University Medical Center to west of the downtown area, the system will be a "great people mover" that will attract new mixed development along its route, especially in the area of the city's Rio Nuevo downtown rejuvenation project, proponents say. Voters approved the streetcar system last year as part of the Regional Transportation Authority's 20-year transportation improvement plan, which will be partly funded with a half-cent sales tax passed in the election.

At an open house Wednesday night in the Historic Downtown Train Deport, residents and business owners mixed with city transportation and Rio Nuevo officials to learn about the streetcar project, a new Fourth Avenue underpass, the completion of the Barraza-Aviation Parkway north to Sixth Street and Rio Nuevo. "If the streetcar gets people to go downtown, it probably will help make that area a lot better," said Vladimir Chetochine, who works at the University of Arizona in marketing. That was one of the selling points of the system when marketed to voters. "It can be a contributor to both historic preservation and bringing new development," said Bryan Copp, an engineer with HDR, a consulting firm designing the system for the city. It has happened that way in other cities where modern streetcar systems were approved by voters and then built. They include San Diego and Portland, Ore. Some who have seen the results in Portland agreed Wednesday that the marriage of a modern streetcar with new, high-quality development has been successful. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Midtown neighborhoods strive for bigger say on infill

[Source: Andrea Kelly, Daily Star] -- Some Midtown neighborhoods are pushing for a process would give them, and the City Council, more clout in battles over what kind of development should be allowed in their area.
The proposed Neighborhood Preservation Zone has its roots in some neighborhoods near the University of Arizona that want to block further "mini-dorm" developments. This type of development happens when a house is replaced with another that is usually larger, often taller and has more bedrooms. It is intended for a higher number of rental residents.
That means more people, more cars and more noise for neighbors because the tenants are often college students who keep later hours than a typical family in a nearby residence.

Neighborhoods that adopt the proposed preservation zoning overlay would have more control over what types of infill projects crop up. As proposed, a zoning overlay would be initiated if more than 25 percent of the property owners in a neighborhood petition for it. That starts a public process that includes several public hearings. The neighborhood has to justify why it wants certain requirements, such as height restrictions. Someone wishing to develop property also has a chance to oppose the proposed zoning overlay. It's then up to the City Council to decide whether to impose the enhanced development restrictions. One developer ran several full-page advertisements in the Arizona Daily Star over the weekend, urging people to call council members and tell them to vote "no" on the proposal because it would limit property owners' rights too much. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

An all-new alphabetic romp through the state

[Source: Gary A. Warner] -- A pizza parlor called the best in the country. The home of the next Super Bowl (and likely new Dodgers spring-training headquarters). The resurrection of an old Scottsdale hotel favored by Bing Crosby into a hip, retro hangout. We thought it time for an all-new A to Z, a play off the postal code for our neighbor to the southeast. Along with the new, there's plenty of old and even ancient to check out. We're taking a quirky approach, so don't look for G to be Grand Canyon or P to stand for Phoenix. So sit back in the shade, slip on the sunglasses or a cowboy hat and enjoy a jaunt across the ancient and modern, the classic and crazy, of Arizona.

Apache. The Navajo have a larger reservation. The Hopi and Zuni are more known for their art. But the name Apache still has a special resonance in Arizona. Geronimo, the legendary Apache leader, was born near present-day Turkey Creek. Fort Apache Historic Park is home to exhibits on both the Indians who lived in the area and the troops sent to enforce Washington's will on the tribe. Some of the fort's buildings date to 1870. Information: 928-338-4525.

Ballooning. You can sail over Phoenix or Tucson, but the most picturesque flights are in Sedona. There are a handful of companies that can give you an airborne view of the famous Red Rocks. Sunrise flights are especially beautiful. Expect to pay at least $170 per person. A good place to start your aerial exploration is with recommendations from the Sedona Chamber of Commerce at www.visitsedona.comor 800-288-7336.

Colorado River. Fans know it simply as "the River" and flock to the water at Page, Parker, and Lake Havasu. When the heat hits triple digits, the partying really gets going with houseboats up north and watercraft of all kinds on the stretch that separates California from Arizona. A good Web site is [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Protect pieces of past

[Source: Arizona Republic] -- Construction zone. Fresh paint. Wet concrete. A lot of Arizona is brand, spanking new. Including the people - 750,000 of us are newcomers who have moved here since 2000. In this frenzied rush into the future, Arizonans shouldn't forget our rich past and the urgent need to protect it. Places around the state offer fascinating connections to our history. They go back as far as traces of Ice Age human campsites near the San Pedro River in southern Arizona, where remains of a mammoth were excavated. Prehistoric cliff dwellings, mysterious rock art, ancient canals, missions, forts, mining towns, adobe ranch houses . . . They're in the spotlight each March as Arizona celebrates Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month.

But each March, we have less. Looters, vandals and pothunters are pillaging Arizona's past. And that's not all. On top of that deliberate damage, visitors are unintentionally degrading archaeological sites. Fighting pothunters is tough, especially when big, quick money is at stake. Sites on public land are often remote and hard to patrol. Cases are hard to prove unless the criminals are caught in the act. Fortunately, volunteers in Arizona are providing crucial extra eyes through the Site Steward program. Destroying archaeological sites in the search for artifacts is perfectly legal on private land, as long as burial areas aren't disturbed. That's sad, because researchers have new methods of learning a lot about ancient cultures from the tiniest clues. Arizona should at least follow New Mexico's example and prohibit the use of heavy equipment on archaeological sites because of the possibility of disturbing a graveyard. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Appeals court rules to protect sacred peaks

[Source: Indian Country Today] -- On March 12, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling to protect the San Francisco Peaks, a mountain held holy by more than 13 Native nations. The slopes of the Peaks, located in northern Arizona, have been at the center of a lengthy battle that has pitted economic interests on public lands against environmental integrity, public health and cultural survival. Arizona Snowbowl, a local ski resort, planned to expand and use treated waste effluent to make snow.

An appeals court panel issued the unanimous decision, which was written by Judge William Fletcher: ''We reverse the decision of the district court in part. We hold that the Forest Service's approval of the Snowbowl's use of recycled sewage effluent to make artificial snow on the San Francisco Peaks violates [the Religious Freedom Restoration Act], and that in one respect the Final Environmental Impact Statement prepared in this case does not comply with [the National Environmental Policy Act].''

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo by Charles Seiverd.]

First ever in-district preservation lobby day

[Source: Preservation Action] -- Each year for the past several decades, Preservation Action has coordinated a Lobby Day on Capitol Hill for preservation advocates nationwide. This event has grown over the years, and a few weeks ago during our 2007 Lobby Day, Preservation Action had more members than we've ever had lobbying together in our nation's capitol. At our annual meeting this year, our Board expressed resounding support for expanding Lobby Day to a program of in-district events. Getting what we ask for requires more than once-a-year outreach. The grassroots are more important now than ever in shaping Congress's view of who we are and why preservation is integral to the communities they represent. We have to show our leadership why preservation is important in their states and districts year round ... and locally! We have a new Congress and a world of new opportunities. Let's make the most of them!

Help us build Lobby Day into an year-long effort accessible to all preservationists, whether or not they can make it to Washington, DC! This year, we're hoping you'll take part in a series of Lobby Days in states across the nation, during Historic Preservation month in May, specifically the last week of May (May 28 - June 1) when legislators will be back in their districts.
Will you take part in an in-district Lobby Day? Let me know today! Either email at; or call the office at 202-637-7873. We'll provide more information about in-district Lobby Days soon.

Monday, March 19, 2007

This day in history

March 18, 1852 : Wells Fargo and Company established. Businessmen in New York establish Wells, Fargo and Company, destined to become the leading freight and banking company of the West. The California economy boomed after the discovery of gold at Sutter's Mill in 1849, spurring a huge demand for shipping. Henry Wells and William Fargo joined with several other New York investors to create Wells, Fargo and Company to serve and profit from this demand. In July 1852, the company began transporting its first loads of freight between the East Coast and the isolated mining camps of California. From the beginning, Wells, Fargo and Company also engaged in banking, making good profits in the traffic of gold dust and providing loans that helped sustain the growth of the California economy.

Aging Pioneer Park train scrutinized

[Source: Srianthi Perera, Arizona Republic] -- Engine 2355 in its heyday was a shiny iron horse that pulled railroad cars of cargo and people between El Paso and Los Angeles, with a regular stop in Mesa. In 1958, after five decades of service, Southern Pacific Railroad donated the steam engine to Mesa, where it was installed in Pioneer Park. For decades, kids scampered along the top of the engine, climbing through its windows and up and down its ladders. Today, this important piece of Mesa's history sits rusting and disintegrating in the sun, a haven for homeless cats that frolic on the sand beneath its carriage.

An iron fence was installed in 1991 limiting access to the train, and it was cut off completely in 1998. By then, vandals had removed most of its gauges and practiced their handwriting on its peeling surfaces. "It was a fixture in the park, but now it's lost because of the gating. People don't even realize that it's there," said Mike Holste, assistant director of Mesa Parks and Recreation. An ad hoc group pulled together by his department is looking into whether the engine could be preserved and kept in Mesa or sold to a museum. Scott Lindsay, a locomotive restoration expert from Birmingham, Ala., has inspected the engine and said it will fall apart within the next three to five years. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Persistence pays off for the White Mountain Apache Tribe

[Source: Lee Allen, Today] -- Remember the old refrain, ''If at first you don't succeed, try, try again''? That kind of thinking has paid off for Arizona's White Mountain Apache Tribe. The actual fort, nestled in stands of high country pine forest outside tribal headquarters in Whitewater, the reservation capital, has been here since early 1870. The U.S. Army gave up its claim to the buildings and property in 1922 and abandoned the site. The two dozen-plus historic structures and a companion cultural center/museum south of the tribe's popular Hon-Dah Casino occupy between 250 and 300 acres of the reservation's 2,600 square miles. Despite being only a small percentage of Apache country, this icon is now a focal point for tribal heritage through Nohwike' Bagowa (''House of our Footprints''), the Apache Cultural Center and Museum.

It was almost a story that never got written, only coming about through persistency. Seeking a way to rehabilitate the crumbling facilities, attorneys for the White Mountain Apache Tribe brought a lawsuit alleging that the U.S. government had ''breached its trust with respect to certain properties and improvements,'' ergo, the fort buildings themselves. In a 2006 judicial update of federal case law involving American Indians, a small footnote details the rejection of that suit: ''The Court of Federal Claims held that legislation did not impose a fiduciary obligation on the government to maintain, protect, repair, and preserve Fort Apache for the benefit of the tribe.'' That adjudication didn't sit well with those who had filed it and, not willing to accept that interpretation and quietly go away, an appeal was filed that resulted in a reversal of that ruling and a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court in which the highest court affirmed the Appeals Court ruling in favor of the tribe.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo by Lee Allen.]

This day in history

March 17, 1901: Van Gogh Paintings Shown. On March 17, 1901, paintings by the late Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh are shown at the Bernheim-Jeune gallery in Paris. The 71 paintings, which captured their subjects in bold brushstrokes and expressive colors, caused a sensation across the art world. Eleven years before, while living in Auvers-sur-Oise outside Paris, van Gogh had committed suicide without any notion that his work was destined to win acclaim beyond his wildest dreams. In his lifetime, he had sold only one painting. One of his paintings--the Yasuda Sunflowers--sold for just under $40 million at a Christie's auction in 1987.

Central Park Neighborhood Association meeting

[Source: Barbara Stocklin] -- HP Office staff attended a meeting of the Central Park Neighborhood Association to discuss the status of the City’s post-World War II study of historic residential development in Phoenix, how the Central Park Neighborhood might fit into this study/its potential eligibility for historic designation, and the impacts of Proposition 207 on future historic district designations. There were approximately 40 people present at this meeting, including City Council member Tom Simplot and a representative from his office.

Arizona's new law complicates struggle to designate Tempe's oldest area

[Source: Margaret Foster, Preservation Online] -- The oldest surviving neighborhood in Tempe, Ariz., isn't an official historic district, and some neighbors have asked the city council to approve its designation before it's too late. Located between downtown Tempe and Arizona State University, the Maple-Ash neighborhood contains 240 houses, most of which were constructed between 1900 and 1940. "We have a tremendous amountt of development going on around us. We have probably eight high-rise projects within less than half a mile of us," says Jenny Lucier, a resident in favor of the designation. "Historic preservation hasn't been very popular here in Tempe."

If Maple-Ash is named a historic district, owners would have to wait six months to demolish a historic structure and also ask the city's historic-preservation commission to approve exterior changes to houses, according to the city's ordinance. Lucier and others in favor of the designation may hit a stumbling block this month, when the state's new Proposition 207 goes into effect. Modeled after Oregon's controversial property-rights law Measure 37, which critics say will encourage development, the law allows property owners to seek compensation from the state for any reduction in their right to use, divide, sell, or possess their property caused by the passage of any land-use law. Those land-use laws include historic districts. Last month, in response to "Prop 207," the League of Arizona Cities and Towns issued a report that recommends governments to require 100 percent support before designating a historic area.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Jenny Lucier.]

Call for nominations for the 2007 Heritage Preservation Honor Awards

The Arizona Preservation Foundation and the Arizona State Historic Preservation Office announce the call for nominations for this year's Governor's Heritage Preservation Honor Awards. This award celebrates historic preservation in Arizona by recognizing the varied contributions of volunteers, professionals, organizations and agencies to promote the goals of historic preservation. Ten honor awards are given to those projects, businesses, organizations, educational programs, or individuals who exemplify outstanding achievements in the preservation of Arizona's prehistoric and historic resources.

Selection of award recipients will be made by a panel of judges drawn from the fields of archaeology, architecture, history, and preservation. This year, presentation of the awards will take place on Thursday, June 14, 2007 at a ceremony to be held in conjunction with the Statewide Preservation Partnership Conference held at the Elks Theater in Prescott. A Grand Award Winner will be selected from the ten winners and announced at the lunch. To obtain a nomination form, as well as additional information about the upcoming Statewide Preservation Partnership Conference, visit the Arizona State Parks website or the Arizona Preservation Foundation's website. Nominations are due by April 6, 2007.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

[Source: Heather MacIntosh, Preservation Action] -- Advocates from around the country convened on Capitol Hill last week to engage legislators in top historic preservation issues. More Preservation Action members attended than ever this year, and we’re hearing good things from the Hill and from our members. In general, we’re seeing a lot of new faces on the Hill (not just legislators, but many new, young staff members) and receptivity is up. Here’s what we’ve heard about the top Lobby Day issues:

The Historic Preservation Fund. The mood among appropriators was slightly different this year. According to the Washington state delegation, Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chair Norm Dicks (D-WA) was more committal than he’s been over the last several years. Dicks was a leader for a conservation trust fund at the end of the Clinton Administration. He is now in the perfect position to follow through on long-requested appropriations levels. We asked for $50 million for State Historic Preservation Officers, $10 million for survey, $30 million for Save America’s Treasures and $10 million for Preserve America grants.

Thus far in this Congress, signals about the appropriations environment have been mixed. Peter Kiefaber, clerk of the Senate Interior Appropriations Committee spoke to our group of advocates on February 27 and noted that the additional appropriation request tied to the survey would likely be well received. Kiefaber noted that being able to tie HPF funds to clear investments that have paid off – and economic development in general – will make a huge difference. According to his House counterpart, the additional funding request is less of a certainty. Most delegations advocated for additional funding by providing information about specific HPF-supported projects.

The Community Restoration and Revitalization Act (improvements to the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit (FRTC) Program). This year advocates asked legislators to support a bill of amendments to the FRTC, and already, we’re seeing an uptick in cosponsors.

Master plans scheduled to be discussed at forum

[Source: Mike Walbert, Arizona Republic] -- The ideas for how to create a park in downtown Gilbert underneath the water tower have been flowing for the past year. Now Gilbert is gathering the public, officials and stakeholders to bottle that bubbling input into one cohesive plan. Gilbert is aiming to wrap up the design process and start utility work by the end of May, town spokesman Greg Svelund said. The whole project could be finished around late spring or summer 2008, Svelund said. According to plans, the park would sit underneath Gilbert's 120-foot-tall water tower and feature landscaping and yet-to-be-finalized amenities.

One amenity that Svelund said is "pretty much a done deal" is a water feature. Gilbert has studied several traditional and non-traditional water fountains, as well as other water features, he said. "It's going to be a fairly prominent aspect of the park," Svelund said. Officials and local stakeholders have expressed interest in other features such as a small outdoor performance area, trail connections, shade and seating. Gilbert secured a $312,000 Arizona Heritage Fund grant last year to pay for part of the park. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

City of Chandler Request for Proposals

The City of Chandler, Arizona is seeking proposals for the development of the City-owned property known as Site 6, which is located at the northwest corner of Arizona Avenue and Chicago Street. The City’s vision for this site is an urban, mixed-use project that incorporates modern architecture and amenities into Historic Downtown Chandler. The project may include a variety of components, including commercial, cultural, entertainment, hotel, institutional, office, restaurant/retail, residential, supporting parking and other compatible uses. The City’s current policy also calls for the Chandler Historical Museum to be located on the site.

The City has seen extensive redevelopment in the Downtown in recent years and numerous projects are at various stages of development. These projects include the construction of over 130 townhomes, new court facility, new City Hall, new Chandler Historical Museum, as well as roadway, circulation and utility improvements. Chandler has experienced phenomenal population growth over the past few decades – with an eight-fold increase since 1980. An educated workforce provides the skilled labor needed by technology-based companies that make Chandler home, including Intel, Freescale, Microchip, Motorola, Orbital Sciences, and Avnet.

The City of Chandler invites firms to review the complete Request for Proposals package at its website and to consider submitting a response. To view the RFP Document, click here. To view the Related Exhibits and Appendices, click here. Proposals for the development of this site must be submitted on or before 5:00 p.m. MST, May 4, 2007. If you have any questions, please contact Richard K. Mulligan by phone(480-782-3032) or e-mail (

Oro Valley says no to more money for Honey Bee

[Source: Daily Star] -- The town of Oro Valley will not contribute money toward an additional $680,000 needed to pay for archeological work on a Hohokam village located within the town, the Oro Valley Town Council recently said. Pima County — not Oro Valley — must find other sources for additional money, the council decided in a public meeting last month. The site, called Honey Bee Village, is the only large, remaining and intact Hohokam village in Oro Valley. It is within Rancho Vistoso, east of North Rancho Vistoso Boulevard and south of the Moore Road alignment. The 13-acre core of Honey Bee Village is meant to become a public preserve. Pima County currently owns these acres, but the county and the town are negotiating an intergovernmental agreement that would transfer ownership to Oro Valley.

The county will continue working with Oro Valley on the issue of where to find additional money for archeological work on the village, said Roger Anyon, a cultural resources program manager with the Pima County Cultural Resources and Historic Preservation Office. The full cost of archeological work on the village —which includes fieldwork, data analysis and reporting — will be about $1.68 million, not the $1 million in bond money that the county had originally allotted for this project. During discussions with Oro Valley town staffers, Pima County had agreed to transfer $340,000 in Pima County bonds from an archeological project in Marana to this project in Oro Valley. But the county wanted Oro Valley to split the cost, which meant that the town would have had to use $340,000 from its general fund to cover the balance. That's not a step the Oro Valley Town Council is willing to take.

Cottage revival recalls '30s Phoenix

[Source: Sue Doerfler, Arizona Republic] -- Jerry and Marge Cook's Coronado Neighborhood house is a reflection of old Phoenix. Featured on Sunday's 20th annual Coronado Home Tour, the home (not pictured), which has reached the 75-year mark, has been remodeled with salvaged materials and decorated with antiques and finds from area businesses. The Coronado Neighborhood, with homes built from the 1910s to the 1940s, is bounded by Seventh and 14th streets, Virginia Avenue and McDowell Road. In the Cooks' house, the pink marble that decorates the countertops and tub surround in the master bath, among other rooms, once graced Lewis Salon Shoes, one of the first shops in Park Central Mall, which opened in 1957. The store had 11 shadow-box windows that displayed 150 pairs of shoes; another 250 pairs were on display inside. The orange and green dining-room rug is the pattern that used to adorn the floors of the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa. The bright colors were put in by Frank Lloyd Wright's widow, Olgivanna, who was hired to redecorate the hotel in 1973. She is said to have chosen the colors as a contrast to the hotel's gray block walls.

When he started salvaging materials 20 years ago, people thought he was crazy, said Jerry Cook, a Phoenix architect whose company is Cook Associates Inc. These days, using salvaged and recycled materials is trendy, and Cook said he still enjoys scavenging items. Other finds include glass salvaged from a remodel of Salt River Project offices and a dining-room chandelier with fluted glass lights. Some items, such as the baby grand piano, came from family members; others, such as the Art Deco-style ceiling light, are original to the house. The Cooks found two matching lights, used elsewhere in the house, while on a trip to Seattle. Other original features include the wood flooring on the first floor and decorative arched doorways.
The home, built in 1930-1931, is Cottage Revival. The architectural style may be unusual in the Valley, where currently Santa Barbara styling predominates. In the 1930s, however, revival styles were popular. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Scottsdale restorers on a special mission

[Source: Ari Cohn, Tribune] -- More than 70 years ago, a group of Yaqui Indians and Mexican immigrants raised a Catholic mission near the fields of citrus and cotton they picked in south Scottsdale. Over the years, the city grew up around the Old Adobe Mission while the church eventually fell into disrepair. But some local residents are working to restore the old mission and the history it holds. The first phase of its remake is being celebrated this week. “When I first came here in 2001, I made it my mission to restore the mission,” said Nick Rayder, a former professor of psychology and statistics at the University of California, Berkeley.

At the time, the interior had been gutted and weeds had colonized the back storage rooms. The adobe structure, crafted from handmade clay bricks, had become unstable, Rayder said. “The tower was falling over,” he said. About 10,000 people have visited the mission — 3821 N. Brown Ave., at the corner of First Street in Old Town — since it reopened 18 months ago, he said. Rayder estimated the total cost to renovate the mission at $600,000. The first phase was to stabilize the building and replace some bricks and adobe, he said. On Tuesday, a group of mission supporters gathered to show off their work so far. “We’re through phase one of the restoration and we’re trying to celebrate people who have contributed,” Rayder said. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

The new west

[Source: Ruben Hernandez] -- Marie Lopez was born in a migrant camp on Goodyear Farms in the West Valley in 1957. Five farm worker camps for Mexican American laborers were created in 1917 by the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company in the area of the Valley now named Litchfield Park. Lopez's early memories were of hundreds of members of her extended family -- "Everybody took care of each other's kids." Dirt roads crisscrossed farmlands of cotton, lettuce, onions and alfalfa that stretched to the western horizon. In the evening, Mexican music drifted from the migrants' shacks, and cars and trucks unloaded hungry workers returning from laboring in the fields all day. Today, Goodyear Farms, along with the migrant way of life for many Latinos in the West Valley, have disappeared. Almost a century later, history reveals a generational exodus of the Latino harvesters into new towns and cities, and into different ways of earning a living. Urbanization has steadily nibbled away at West Valley farmland.

Today, hundreds of thousands of acres of cropland have been converted into auto and shopping malls, restaurant rows and vast swatches of family homes. This year Arizona surpassed the rest of the nation in adding new residents. And the fastest growing region of the state is the West Valley. Western Maricopa County has overtaken the East Valley as the supergrowth region, mid-decade Census figures show, with much future growth predicted. Economic forecaster Elliot Pollack, whose firm Elliot Pollack & Co. reports economic trends, predicts the West Valley's population and housing explosion will grow strong for decades. About 44 percent of the Valley's population is expected to live in the West Valley by 2020, Pollack said during a presentation to WestMarc, the region's economic development organization. About 58 percent of the Valley's housing units built in the next decade in the western Maricopa County. For Lopez - now bearing the married name of Marie Lopez Rogers and the title of mayor of Avondale - the recollections are bittersweet. "You have mixed feelings to see the past go away," she says. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Monday, March 05, 2007

This day in history

March 5, 1770: Civilians and soldiers clash in the Boston Massacre. On the cold, snowy night of March 5, 1770, a mob of angry colonists gathers at the Customs House in Boston and begins tossing snowballs and rocks at the lone British soldier guarding the building. The protesters opposed the occupation of their city by British troops, who were sent to Boston in 1768 to enforce unpopular taxation measures passed by a British parliament without direct American representation. The previous Friday, British soldiers looking for part-time work and local Bostonian laborers had brawled at John Hancockýs wharf. Peace settled over the city during the two-day observance of the Puritan Sabbath. However, tempers on both sides were still flaring and no one expected Monday, March 5, to pass without incident. After sunset, the brawl between Boston civilians and British soldiers began again.

When the customs-house sentinel called for assistance, a British corporal and seven soldiers came to his aid. Two of these reinforcements had been among the soldiers brawling on Hancockýs wharf the previous Friday. British Captain Thomas Preston assumed command of the riled Redcoats and ordered them to fix their bayonets. As the crowd dared the snow-pelted soldiers to fire, Private Hugh Montgomery slipped and fell, leading him to discharge his rifle into the jeering crowd. The other soldiers began firing a moment later, and when the smoke cleared, five colonists were dead or dying. Three more were injured. The deaths of the five men are sometimes regarded as the first fatalities of the American Revolution. The British soldiers were put on trial, and John Adams and Josiah Quincy Jr. agreed to defend the soldiers, in a show of support of the colonial justice system. When the trial ended in December 1770, only two of the six British soldiers were found guilty of manslaughter. They were branded on the thumb and released.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Manross: No light rail for Scottsdale Road

[Source: Ari Cohn, Tribune] -- Scottsdale Mayor Mary Manross Thursday came out against light rail on Scottsdale Road and called for a bond issue election next year to finance tourism projects, including a Western heritage museum and a nature center in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. However, some of the proposals, particularly the bond issue, could be a tough sell to her fellow City Council members. Councilman Jim Lane said he wouldn’t rule out an election, but said he needed more information before making a decision. “I like to focus on core municipal functions,” Lane said. “That’s my primary thing.” During her annual State of the City speech, Manross called transportation “the No. 1 issue, without question.” But a $70 million-a-mile proposal to build light-rail transit on Scottsdale Road and connect it to a 20-mile system planned in adjacent cities is not the way to go, she said.

Scottsdale has yet to see if light-rail projects in Phoenix, Tempe and Mesa will be effective, Manross said. But downtown Scottsdale and Old Town are unique and need to be protected, she said. “Let there be no question about it, that while I support improved transit opportunities on our signature road, I do not support light rail on Scottsdale Road going through the heart of our downtown,” Manross said. She said construction is set to begin this summer on a Loop 101 car pool lane between Tatum Boulevard and Princess Drive to handle a bus rapid transit system. “Coupled with park-and-ride lots and other local transit connectors, (bus rapid transit) can fill an important transportation gap for our work force commuting to and from Scottsdale and help us reduce the number of cars on our local streets,” Manross said. The city’s transportation master plan is expected to be done this fall, she said, and Scottsdale expects to expand its network of bicycle, pedestrian and equestrian paths. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Developer seeks to preserve ancient ruins

[Source: Mark Havnes, Salt Lake Tribune] -- The ancient Anasazi carved out an existence in the hills outside Kanab. They dug pits, hunted elk and grew maize. Now, St. George developer Milo McCowan wants to carve out a subdivision on those same slopes. He wants to build homes, sculpt trails and erect an amphitheater. Oh, and he wants to save - and even capitalize on - many of those American Indian ruins. "We are dedicating 20 acres in the project for long-term archaeological excavation and study, hopefully in partnership with a university," McCowan said. "Amateur archaeologists could move here and live and assist with a significant dig in their own neighborhood." At his subdivision - named Chaco Canyon after the famous Anasazi ruins in New Mexico - McCowan plans to build 700 to 800 houses and town homes on 270 acres west of Kanab Creek, which are in the process of being annexed into Kanab.

The homes will be clustered to make way for open spaces and trails. McCowan also hopes to add an amphitheater for the performing arts and a museum for showcasing the area's artifacts. The entrance road will wind between two ruin sites. Doug McFadden, former head archaeologist with the Bureau of Land Management's nearby Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, said the ruins - at 14 sites - offer excellent examples of how the Virgin Anasazi lived from the year 1 to the 1200s, when they abruptly vanished. McFadden, whose private consulting firm conducted an archaeological survey of the area for McCowan last spring, said the ancient dwellings - layered and built in blocks of rooms - were used for residential and storage space. They extend down about 15 feet.

Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Mark Havnes.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

City Council Arts, Culture and Historic Preservation Subcommittee

[Source: Barbara Stocklin] -- On February 22, 2007, the Arts, Culture and Historic Preservation Subcommittee met and recommended City Council approval to expend up to $40,000 in available Historic Preservation Bond Funds for four (4) Exterior Rehabilitation matching grant rehabilitation projects; to execute a contract with Heritage Architecture and Planning to update the city’s historic preservation design guidelines using up to $85,000 in available Historic Preservation Bond Funds; and to apply retroactively for a matching $10,000 Certified Local Government Pass-Through Grant to fund the production and publication of the design guidelines. The Historic Preservation Office also presented a report on its recently completed Customer Service Survey to the Subcommittee. Several members of the Historic Preservation Commission and the public were present at the meeting to speak on these items.

This day in history

March 1, 1961 : Peace Corps Established. On March 1, 1961, President John F. Kennedy issues an Order establishing the Peace Corps as a new agency within the Department of State. The agency would send trained Americans to foreign nations to assist in development efforts. The Peace Corps captured the imagination of the U.S. public, and during the week after its creation thousands of letters poured into Washington from young Americans hoping to volunteer. The Peace Corps proposal gained momentum in the final days of Kennedy's campaign, and on November 8 he was narrowly elected the 35th president of the United States.

On January 20, 1961, in his famous inaugural address, he promised aid to the poor of the world. "To those peoples in the huts and villages of half the globe struggling to break the bonds of mass misery," he said, "we pledge our best efforts to help them help themselves, for whatever period is required--not because the communists may be doing it, not because we seek their votes, but because it is right." He also appealed to Americans to "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country." On September 22, 1961, Kennedy signed congressional legislation creating a permanent Peace Corps that would "promote world peace and friendship" through three goals: (1) to help the peoples of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women; (2) to help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served; and (3) to help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans. By the end of 1963, 7,000 volunteers were in the field, serving in 44 Third World countries.

Group pushes hip downtown Phoenix

[Source: Ginger D. Richardson and Erica Sagon, Arizona Republic] -- San Diego has the Gaslamp Quarter, Miami has South Beach and Denver has LoDo. Now, a group of private developers wants to create a hip hangout spot in downtown Phoenix, one that rivals or even surpasses those found in some of the nation's greatest cities. The proposed Jackson Street Entertainment District would cut a path across the southern end of downtown Phoenix, AZ, stretching from Central Avenue to Chase Field, and could be anchored by the state's first House of Blues music venue. The blockbuster proposal is significant because it addresses downtown Phoenix's lack of full-time residents and nightlife, both of which are key to turning the area into a true destination spot. The new district, when complete, could boast comedy clubs, signature restaurants, live-music spots and art galleries, as well as office space, housing units and a hotel.

Dale Jensen, part owner of the Phoenix Suns and Arizona Diamondbacks, is one of Jackson Street 's backers. He said he and his business partners decided to move forward with the idea after realizing that there was nothing to keep people downtown after a Suns or Diamondbacks game. "The thought was, we have these two big boxes in downtown, the arena and the ballpark, but we really have nothing for people to do but go to that box and go home," he said. Jackson Street marks the second time in recent months that the private sector has turned its attention to downtown Phoenix in a big way.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Leanne Matzenger.]