In Philadelphia, preserving and protecting historically significant structures in our neighborhood requires proactive efforts by ordinary volunteers to identify and nominate buildings to be included on the city’s register of historic places.
While neighbors are excited about the new construction boon — many have also expressed a strong desire to protect buildings and sites which are contributing to the rich neighborhood history of what makes Bella Vista unique, while also being mindful of sustainability, safety, and environmental concerns associated with demolition.
Consideration for renovations, conversions, and adaptive reuse where practicable, can be encouraged by placing the buildings under the purview of the Historical Commission through the nomination process.
As with many city functions and services, ordinary volunteers act as an important extension of that process. Since Bella Vista does not have a historic district, it is up to individuals to identify and advocate for the historic register’s inclusion of each specific property with a notable history, architecture, or other characteristics of significance.
How can you get involved?
- Become familiar with the current list of properties on the city’s historic register (below)
- Contact BVNA with additional building(s) you believe to be significant and meriting to have any potential demolition approved by the Historical Commission. Community input and support can help guide and prioritize the backlog of nominations.
- Volunteer with us. Whether it is to photograph the building, research its history (or that of its architect or original occupant), or donating to help fund such work — we always welcome help.
- Nominate buildings yourself. Anyone can nominate a structure.
Property of the Month Features
- January 2020 – Church of the Crucifixion – 620 S 8th St
- February 2020 – Banca d Bozzelli – 735-37 S. 7th St
- March 2020 – Columbus Hall – 744 S 8th St
- April 2020 – DiGiorgio Tumolillo – 927-929 S 8th St
- May 2020 – William Still House – 625 S. Delhi St
- June 2020 – Frances Ellen Watkins Harper House – 1006 Bainbridge St
- July 2020 – Tripoli Barber Supply – 606 S. 9th Street
- September 2020 – Engine Company 11 – 1050 South St
- November 2020 – Ronaldson Cemetery – 900 S 9th St
- January 2021 – Nebinger Elementary School – 601 Carpenter Street
Do you own one of these unique properties? Would you like to learn how BVNA can facilitate the costs and paperwork of recognizing your property through an official city-issued historic plaque? Drop us a line!