The State Historic Preservation Office has awarded $170,000 in grants to three Michigan communities, the Michigan Strategic Fund announced in July. The grants represent awards from the federal Historic Preservation Fund—Certified Local Government program administered by the SHPO and will benefit local preservation and community planning goals.
“Historic preservation is about finding ways to celebrate, protect and invest in the irreplaceable heritage assets that make our communities special,” said Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer Martha MacFarlane-Faes. “The CLG program is an important tool through which SHPO and the National Park Service support local communities in their ongoing preservation efforts. We are pleased to present this year’s grant recipients and look forward to working alongside them in the successful completion of their projects.”
The Certified Local Government program is a partnership among local, state and national governments focused on promoting historic preservation at the local level. The National Park Service administers the program in coordination with the State Historic Preservation Office. Participation in the program, which is open to any community willing to meet basic program requirements, makes a community eligible for specialized technical assistance and programming from the SHPO.
Participation in the CLG program also makes a community eligible for annual grants provided by the U.S. Department of the Interior and administered by the SHPO. These grants may be used for a variety of preservation activities, such as historic resource surveys, National Register of Historic Places nominations, educational and heritage tourism initiatives, pre-development plans and studies, and rehabilitation of certain historic properties.
This year’s grant recipients include:
City of Niles
- The city of Niles is receiving a $70,000 grant to hire a contractor to rehabilitate the roof of the Henry A. Chapin House, which is operated as part of the Niles History Center, a division of the City of Niles Community Development Department. The project will help ensure that the building, constructed in 1884 and listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1981, remains a viable community asset.
“The city of Niles is looking forward to working with the Michigan SHPO through the CLG grant to complete the roofing project,” said Niles History Center Director Christina Arseneau. “The work will stabilize this beloved community landmark for future generations.”
The project includes repairing the slate roof, ridge cap, gutters and downspouts, and upper fascia and builds on the city’s ongoing stewardship of the property, which has included restoration of the porch, accessibility improvements and interior rehabilitation.
City of Northville
- The city of Northville is receiving a $48,000 grant to hire a federally qualified historic preservation consultant to update the city’s historic preservation design guidelines. The updated guidelines will incorporate preservation best practices and new technologies that have evolved since the original design guidelines were published in 1999 and better equip the local historic district commission and property owners to make informed decisions about designated properties in the community.
“Receiving this grant is wonderful news,” said City Manager Patrick Sullivan. “It will help Northville continue the hard work undertaken by property and business owners, the Historic District Commission, Northville Historical Society and city officials to preserve their heritage.”
City of Ann Arbor
- The city of Ann Arbor is receiving a $45,000 grant to hire a federally qualified historic preservation consultant to complete a survey update for the Old Fourth Ward Historic District, which was established in 1982. The survey will include updated documentation and analysis of the more than 300 properties in the district and will better enable the city and historic district commission to oversee its responsibilities related to the district. Updated documentation will also assist property owners in understanding how they may qualify for historic preservation incentives, such as the recently released state historic tax credit.
“Ann Arbor is very excited to receive a 2022 CLG grant from the State Historic Preservation Office,” said Jill Thacher, historic preservation coordinator for the city of Ann Arbor. “The grant will allow us to update the Old Fourth Ward Historic District survey, which was completed in 1982 and is missing critical information that would be standard in a modern survey. The Old Fourth Ward Neighborhood Association has been very supportive of this effort, and we all look forward to the final product.”
Funding was also provided to CLG communities to send staff and historic district commission members to the 2022 National Alliance of Preservation Commissions conference in Cincinnati to learn about preservation best practices.
CLG grants are awarded annually on a competitive basis. Eligible applicants include Michigan's 38 CLG communities, which may partner with a nonprofit organization or other public entity. The State Historic Preservation Office welcomes innovative proposals that promote historic preservation. For more information on the CLG program and funding opportunities, visit http://www.michigan.gov/CLGgrants.