Wednesday February 28, 2024
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Bardtown, Bellevue, Covington, Danville, Frankfort, Louisville, Newport Awarded Federal Grants For Historic Preservation

Nine grants that will generate investment of nearly $100,000 in historic preservation-related projects have been awarded to seven Certified Local Government (CLG) communities for fiscal year 2018-19 by the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office (KHC). The annual grants are part of a pass-through allocated from the federal Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) for state preservation offices to recognize, save, and protect historic places.

Grants totaling $58,468 went to Bardstown, Bellevue, Covington, Danville, Frankfort, Metro Louisville and Newport, which will require local matches totaling at least $38,980. The awards were approved earlier this year by the KHC board, with applications for the next funding cycle set to be distributed to Kentucky’s 23 participating CLG communities in November.

“October is National Community Planning Month, a good time for our CLG partners to consider how historic neighborhoods add to the overall vitality, livability, and desirability of their communities,” said Vicki Birenberg, CLG program and planning coordinator.

The grants will largely fund training and education initiatives but also be used to revise and update local historic district design guidelines, survey historic resources, and nominate a historic district to the National Register of Historic Places. A portion of KHC’s federal set-aside has also been made available to provide scholarships to local CLG program coordinators and board members to attend the annual National Trust for Historic Preservation National Preservation Conference, and KHC’s Kentucky Main Street Program annual spring meeting.

All grant activities must directly support goals outlined in “A Map Made of Memory: Kentucky’s State Historic Preservation plan, 2017-2021.”

CLG designation offers a way for local governments to develop a comprehensive approach to historic preservation and promote the integration of preservation interests into the planning process. To qualify, local governments must meet five broad standards, including enacting a historic preservation ordinance and appointing a professionally qualified preservation commission or architectural review board. In addition to grant eligibility, CLG benefits include access to technical assistance from KHC and the National Park Service.

City and county-wide historic preservation commissions that have earned CLG designation may apply for the annual grants. Qualifying projects require a local match of at least 40 percent. Grants cannot be used to acquire or rehabilitate historic buildings.

KHC is required to allocate at least 10 percent of its HPF apportionment to CLG grants. Those charged with training and implementing funded projects must adhere to the Secretary of the Interior’s standards and guidelines for the treatment of historic properties. For more, contact Vicki Birenberg at 502-892-3606 or visit

2018-19 Certified Local Government historic preservation grants

Bardstown, Protect and Preserve Workshops (federal share $9,569, minimum local match $6,379), for two educational workshops: one to cover cemetery and monument preservation, the other to teach historic property owners and others how to conduct research to learn the history of a property from deeds and other historic documents, and to understand design review and the Certificate of Appropriateness process for proposed changes to properties located in historic districts.

Bellevue, Window Rehabilitation Workshop (federal share $1,200, minimum local match $800), to plan, market and implement a full-day intensive historic wood window rehabilitation demonstration and workshop for property owners and local contractors.

Bellevue, Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend (federal share $3,200, minimum local match $2,133), to partner with other Northern Kentucky communities to produce the 8th annual Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend, a free, multifaceted educational event with sessions on topics of interest to historic property owners. A day is also dedicated to professional development, allowing participants to earn professional credits from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).

Covington, Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend (federal share $3,000, minimum local match $2,000), to partner with other Northern Kentucky communities to produce the 8th annual Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend (see above).

Danville, Historic Preservation Workshop Series (federal share $2,500, minimum local match $1,667), to produce three educational workshops to assist historic property owners: one focusing on local historic preservation overlay zones, including how to apply and interpret new historic district design guidelines; one to address the appropriate rehabilitation of historic windows; and a third to explore National Register eligibility and designation, how it differs from local designation, and how one goes about getting a property or district designated.

Frankfort, Historic Property Brochures (federal share $3,000, minimum local match $2,000), to develop, print and mail two brochures to educate property owners living in historic districts about the Certificate of Appropriateness process and existing historic zoning regulations, and about federal and state historic rehabilitation tax credit programs as well as local tax moratoriums and grant opportunities for qualified rehabilitation.

Louisville-Jefferson County Metro Government, Survey Project (federal share $24,999, minimum local match $16,677), to survey historic buildings in a large portion (approximately 50%) of the Portland neighborhood, which currently has only a small National Register district with 106 primary buildings, while more than 4,000 resources remain undocumented. This neighborhood is currently experiencing intensive redevelopment due to its attractive building stock and urban location, and this step toward expanding National Register eligibility will assist owners with preservation incentives such as rehabilitation tax credits.

Newport, Design Guidelines Update (federal share $3,000, minimum local match $2,000), for funding to allow staff to revise and update Historic District Design Guidelines, which were originally developed for a single district. The city now has three local districts, each with its own character. The update will address the distinctive elements of each district as well as include sections on renewable energy and use of alternative materials for restoration.

Newport, National Register nomination for the Buena Vista Historic District (federal share $8,000, minimum local match $5,334), to develop a National Register nomination for the Buena Vista Historic District, which will include more than 1,000 primary buildings. The survey work required to develop the nomination was completed with a previous CLG grant.

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