2017-11-09 / Local

Midcoast historic preservation projects recognized

The Times Record


On Tuesday, Maine Preservation recognized 16 historic preservation projects, including three local projects.

“Taking vacant and underutilized historic buildings and adaptively using and updating them is an essential ingredient for community revitalization and vitality,” said Maine Preservation Executive Director Greg Paxton in a press release. “When completed these buildings lift the economics of the areas around them and the spirits of the citizens benefiting from them.

“These projects recall the history of their surrounds and our predecessors that built and used them, while filling current needs. And these well-built buildings can be feasibly rehabilitated, economically operated and energy efficient. Maine Preservation is pleased to recognize these people and projects and the many benefits to Maine they provide.”

Among projects recognized was Bath’s John E.L. Huse School Apartments. Named to honor Bath’s first casualty of World War II, the John E.L. Huse Memorial School was constructed in 1942 to serve the children of Bath Iron Works employees.

“Today, thanks to an adaptive use project of the Szanton Company, the school retains its historic mid-century vibe while providing 59 units of much needed affordable housing for the deserving citizens of Bath,” according to Maine Preservation, which notes that, just a week after opening 78 percent of the units had been rented.

Also in Bath, the Winter Street Church project was recognized along with Arron Sturgis, principal of Preservation Timber Framing. According to Maine Preservation, Sturgis “produced a practical solution to restoring the fallen 27-foot high vaulted sanctuary ceiling that saved tens of thousands of dollars in scaffold rental expenses, met property owner Sagadahoc Preservation Inc.’s pressing challenges, and exemplified how traditional craftsmanship can neatly address contemporary building needs.”

The Elijah Kellogg Church in Harpswell was also recognized. “Built in the fall of 1843 and later named in honor of its first minister, the Elijah Kellogg Church has long been a community gathering place,” states Maine Preservation. “Unfortunately, time and deferred maintenance took a toll on the building and in 2013 an effort to restore and preserve the Elijah Kellogg Church started in earnest. This community based preservation project exceeded the Congregation’s ambitious goals. It remains a shining example of quality workmanship – both the 19th century structure and the recent rejuvenation.”

More detailed information on the 2017 Maine Preservation Honor Awards may be found at mainepreservation.org.

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