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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Keeping it historic

I enjoyed the Housing Summit on Saturday. The church room was set up sort of like a workshop, there were quite a large number of people there and a large number of long tables. I sat at a table where I knew a couple of people and then I met others at our table.

One guy I met asked me to come over to his house after the meeting, he was proud of it and he wanted to talk. I walked over and met his wife and kids and we talked about everything really. As I was walking back to my car at the church, about a half hour or 45 minutes later, a lady driving by started yelling out to me. She said, "This neighborhood is historic! We're not giving it up so easily!" and she kept driving, so I couldn't hear the rest.

I realized she saw me carrying my pad and pen, which I had in my hand since the meeting, and perhaps thought I was a developer scouting the neighborhood. This I liked. It showed me that people do care and they are starting to stand up for themselves.

But what I learned from someone that day is that the City of Miami really doesn't care about preserving anything. If you want to make your house historic they nickle and dime you to death, it costs you thousands of dollars, just for prep-work in order to get the historic designation going. Rather than support or credit the person trying to preserve history, the City costs them lots of money.

The laws need to change..


At the meeting, the Grove pioneer EWF Stirrup's House was brought up, and people are bitter about the way the house is being rebuilt and not restored. The house is being rebuilt to look historic and is turning into a bed and breakfast (See that here). I was also curious as to why the building was being rebuilt and not restored, until I realized that the house just sat and rotted for years, termites and lack of care hurt the house (look at it here).  It's costing more to rebuild the place as being historic, than it would have been to just renovate the old house, if it has been kept up. That's where the city should step in. In my neighborhood they come after you if you don't mow the lawn, why are old, historic houses allowed to rot without the city fining someone?

And the Mariah Brown house. It's just a shell. This old, historic Grove house is like an old western movie set, just the outside is there.

And of course there is the ACE Theater, which has been run into the ground for years. So while I do feel and care about everyone that is affected, why not at least try to keep things in good condition?

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