Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Rick Dover Offers Tips For Historic Preservation Projects

The golden rule of historic preservation is reuse, reuse, reuse, says Rick Dover.
The United States is full of historic sites and cultural resources, says Rick Dover. For this reason many homebuilders as well as do-it-yourselfers tend to embark upon preservation projects only to get frustrated and give up. Here, Middle Tennessee property development expert Rick Dover offers tips on how to maintain the integrity and sentimental significance of a historic property during renovation.

Know the building

According to Rick Dover, historical preservation is typically reserved for homes at least half a century old. Because of this, many of these buildings and their outlying structures may be damaged, dilapidated or partially destroyed. Rick Dover suggests evaluating any possible barriers to reconstruction before work commences. A building inspector, structural engineer or registered architect is essential at this stage.

Rick Dover also suggests checking historical records, deeds and tax records to see if the property is associated with any notable historical figure.

Reuse and recycle

Rick Dover explains that historical buildings are characteristically constructed of materials that are no longer available for consumer purchase. This makes it necessary to reuse everything to preserve the historic quality and charm of the structure. One tip that Rick Dover offers is to check basements, attics, detached garages and any other structure on the property for excess material that may have been left from original construction.

If original materials are unavailable or must be replaced, match them as closely as possible. Rick Dover notes that structurally unsound buildings may be reinforced with modern material as long as it does not affect the appearance of the property.

Maintain original features

Many older homes and buildings were designed with elaborate features. Rick Dover notes that staircases, built-in shelves and bookcases, and decorative wainscoting and crown molding are common in antiquated structures. Rick Dover believes that during a renovation, these novel touches must be maintained in order for the property to conserve the charm of its era.

Check mandated code requirements

Rick Dover notes that different cities and municipalities will have different building codes to follow. For instance, some codes mandate that all renovations must include safety measures for storms, earthquake or other acts of nature. The Americans Disabilities Act of 1990 may also mandate certain modifications to bring the building up to code, says Rick Dover. Knowing these potential requirements at the start of the process will ensure a smoother renovation.

Treatment approaches to historic preservation

Rick Dover explains that there are four main approaches to historic preservation. The first being preservation, which means the retention of as much of the original structure as possible. Secondly, Rick Dover notes that rehabilitation emphasizes the retention of historic materials via repair or reuse. Restoration is the third aspect of historic building renovation, which essentially means re-highlighting the structure’s original materials and removing those added at a later date. Finally, Rick Dover maintains that reconstruction is the act of re-creating formerly existing structures, landscapes or elements in a historic site.

About Rick Dover and Family Pride Corporation

Rick Dover and Family Pride Corporation have been passionate about historic preservation since the company was created in 1993. Rick Dover has been deeply involved with saving historic structures in Tennessee, North Carolina and Florida, and has served as a board member of Knox Heritage, Sequoyah Hills Preservation, and the Americas Foundation. In addition, he has won numerous awards for historic preservation including the Tennessee Historical Commission’s Certificate of Merit, and has been twice awarded historic preservation of the year awards from the East Tennessee Historic Preservation Alliance. Whether for senior housing, commercial or residential use, Rick Dover and Family Pride Corporation have been saving and preserving historical buildings for more than 20 years.

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