Down East Seniors learn about historic district

Published 2:00 pm Friday, September 15, 2017

The Down East Seniors Club held its Sept. 13 meeting at the Blind Center of North Carolina in Washington. President Stewart Rumley led the meeting. Jim Hackney played for the singing of “God Bless America,” and Charles Smith gave the invocation. Ed Hamrick read factoids for the date in history, and Dick Paul provided humor.

There was one guest present.

Program Chairman Julius Brauer introduced City of Washington Community Development Planner Emily Rebert as the speaker. Rebert said most of her time is spent working with the Historic Commission as historic preservation planner. There are 600 buildings in the Washington historic district, which makes it one of the largest historic districts in eastern North Carolina. Any building in this district that is 50 or more years old is considered historic. Before any work is done to the exterior of any of these buildings that would change its appearance or historic character it must be reviewed and approved by the Historic Commission. This review follows guidelines set forth by the Secretary of Interior Standards of Rehabilitation. The primary consideration is whether any change adds to or takes away from the character of the community. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis. Several commercial properties in the downtown area have recently been sold and redevelopment plans for them will have to be approved by the commission.

Hamrick won the 50/50 drawing.