Sunday, April 30, 2006

The Titus House In The Press

What a surprise to see our home on the front page of the Scottsdale Tribune today. It is gratifying to see that the City of Scottsdale is so interested in Historic Preservation that this topic made it to the front page.

Article courtesy of the Scottsdale Tribune:

Local News

DESIGNATED: The Titus House on Hayden Road is on the Scottsdale list of historic buildings.

Paul O'Neill Tribune

Homes not old, just historic
By Shanna Hogan, Tribune

April 29, 2006
Some may describe Scottsdale’s 1950s neighborhoods as old, worn or weathered. The city’s Historic Preservation Commission views them as windows to the past.

Last year, the commission designated its first two historic neighborhoods, Village Grove and Town and Country Scottsdale. This year the commission hopes to do the same for at least two more.

“We’re looking at neighborhoods built in the 1950s,” said Don Meserve, Scottsdale’s preservation planner. “Production homebuilders were just learning their trade in the post-World War II period — some of these 1950s neighborhoods really represent that.”

Scottsdale Estates 4, from Virginia Avenue to Oak Street west of 74th Street, and Sherwood Heights, between 56th and 60th streets north of Oak, are among the neighborhoods under consideration. The ones chosen could receive their designation by the end of the year.

Using historic designation, the city is able to protect and preserve the area’s character.

“It’s really considered a partnership between the city and the residents in these neighborhoods,” Meserve said.

Jesse and Cecile Rosalez are 15-year residents of Village Grove, a 255-house subdivision at the southwest corner of 68th and Oak streets. They said they sought out the neighborhood because of its classic character.

“All the houses are different here,” Cecile Rosalez said. “These are solid, sturdy homes. You feel like they’ll last longer.”

The houses are Californiastyle ranch homes built by Allied Construction in 1957.

The only visible change to the neighborhood since its historic designation is small plaques above street signs. It is nice to be recognized as a unique neighborhood, the couple said.

“These neighborhoods are significant examples of why Scottsdale is around,” said Debbie Abele, Scottsdale historic preservation officer. “The postwar period of growth in Scottsdale was one of its most important periods. It attracted people from all over the United States.”

To be eligible for historic designation, a neighborhood must be about 50 years old. The commission also looks at architectural style, the significance of the buildings’ time period and how the integrity of the neighborhood has endured.

Historic designation gives neighborhoods some protection from demolition and significant alterations. Residents can still make changes such as additions, although preservation guidelines are provided.

To help enforce those guidelines, Scottsdale recently enacted incentives for property owners through a rehabilitation program.

The program allows the commission to match 50 percent of expenses for exterior renovation up to $10,000, if the renovation helps preserve the character of the homes.

“Scottsdale has some excellent examples of the range of building that occurred,” Abele said. “Some of the most innovative builders and developers were working here in Scottsdale that ended up shaping the way neighborhoods were built across America.”
Contact Shanna Hogan by telephone at (480) 970-2339.


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