Washington and Los Angeles (November 28, 2012) – The National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Urban Land Institute (ULI) today announced a new research partnership designed to advance the preservation and reuse of older and historic buildings in major U.S. cities.
Focusing initially on the City of Los Angeles, the two organizations will identify the most common obstacles to building reuse and develop a set of solutions for how to overcome them. The research will be led by the National Trust’s Preservation Green Lab, a sustainability think tank, and ULI Los Angeles. The project has been made possible with support from the Jesse Ball duPont Fund.
“More than one billion square feet of buildings are demolished in the United States each year, despite the fact that many of those structures could – and should – be put back into productive use,” said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “We are excited to partner with ULI to advance building reuse as a sound urban policy that is good for the environment, the economy and our heritage.”
“Building reuse is a key component to the responsible use of land and the creation of sustainable, thriving communities,” said Patrick Phillips, CEO of the Urban Land Institute. “This research will help us understand barriers to rehabilitation, and capitalize on the real estate industry’s growing interest in the reuse of older and historic buildings.”
The city of Los Angeles was selected for the pilot on the basis of its rich stock of historic resources and its Adaptive Reuse Ordinance, which, since 1999, has helped facilitate the conversion of dozens of historic and underutilized structures by providing flexibility in achieving code compliance. Notable residential examples include The Orpheum, Eastern Columbia Building and The Standard. Los Angeles recently has seen a large infusion of mass transit funding, making it fertile ground for studying many of the challenges associated with balancing preservation and density-related development.
“We are thrilled that the Preservation Green Lab selected Los Angeles to kick off this important research,” said Gail Goldberg, executive director of the ULI Los Angeles. “Los Angeles has a robust and diverse inventory of historic buildings, and a strong legacy of preserving these structures through our adaptive reuse ordinance.”
About the National Trust for Historic Preservation & Preservation Green Lab:
The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places. The Preservation Green Lab is a sustainability think tank and national leader in efforts to advance the reuse and retrofit of older and historic buildings. It was launched in 2009 and is based in Seattle, Wash.
About the Urban Land Institute:
The Urban Land Institute is a nonprofit education and research institute that provides leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide. ULI Los Angeleshas an active membership drawn from the counties of Los Angeles, Ventura, Kern, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, and is composed of groups and individuals united in their pursuit of improving land-use policies.
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