City of Valdosta Awarded Georgia Department of Natural Resources Historic Preservation Grant

The City of Valdosta is one of nine Georgia municipalities awarded a federal subgrant to support historic preservation activities in our community.  Valdosta will receive $13,500 from the 2019 Historic Preservation Fund Grant to use for completing an updated historic resource survey. This allows officials to resurvey the Valdosta Local Historic District.  The existing survey was completed in 2004 and included properties 50 years old and older while the new survey will include properties 40 years old and older in order to have a longer lifespan.

"Valdosta is designated as a Certified Local Government because of its Local Historic District and the Historic Preservation Commission, both of which help to preserve the architecture and character of the District. The Local Historic District in Valdosta contains approximately 150 city blocks with 1,834 parcels containing 1,558 structures, most of which are historic. It is these very buildings that make up the downtown and the surrounding older neighborhoods which hold the history and identity of Valdosta as we know it," said City Manager Mark Barber.

"Keeping an accurate and updated survey of these buildings is an important part of planning for their protection for future generations to enjoy. The current survey of the Local Historic District is 15 years old and the information is outdated. With the new survey, we are expecting to add a minimum of 150 newly designated historic buildings within the district that were not old enough to qualify when the original survey was done. This is very exciting because the new survey data will be collected electronically and will be placed on the publicly available Georgia Historic Resources GIS Map (GNAHRGIS) with address points that contain information such as style, date of construction, outbuildings and historic landscape or site features," said Historic Preservation and Special Projects Planner, James Horton.

The Historic Preservation Fund Grants facilitate historic preservation planning initiatives and projects such as historic resource surveys, outreach efforts, and brick-and-mortar projects throughout the state. The grants are provided annually through the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s National Park Service and are administered by the Historic Preservation Division (HPD) of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Each year, Georgia's 99 Certified Local Governments (CLGs) are eligible to apply for these matching grants (60 percent federal/40 percent local).

To be eligible to become a federal Certified Local Government, a city or county must have passed a preservation ordinance and have established a historic preservation commission and designated a local historic district.

"Historic preservation works best as a partnership with local stakeholders, and we are proud of the efforts of this year’s grant recipients and all of our Certified Local Government partners," said Dr. David Crass, HPD Division Director. "The CLG program is one of our most important tools in promoting economic development focused on local historic resources. The communities participating in the program have taken the initiative to work to protect the historic resources that make their respective cities, or counties, truly special."

HPF Grant Funds may be used for a variety of other preservation activities, including archaeological surveys, design guidelines, educational/promotional/tourism activities, and publications.