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Historic Resource Survey to be completed this fall for City of Round Rock

After documenting all of the properties within the Downtown Master Plan area last year, the City of Round Rock is now moving forward to complete its Downtown Historic Resources Survey, which includes new recommendations pertaining to the preservation of certain buildings in the downtown area.

Open house on Oct. 25
An informational open house for the public will be held from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 25, in the Round Rock Public Library, Room C, followed immediately by the Historic Preservation Commission meeting at 6 p.m. Maps, explanatory materials, and information about the City’s historic preservation programs will be available at the open house. Planning and Development Services staff and members of the Historic Preservation Commission will also be on hand to answer questions.

Survey of historic buildings
During the Downtown Master Plan process, residents made it clear that they wanted the City to preserve Round Rock’s character. Surveying the City’s historic buildings helps officials, the Planning and Development Services Department, and the public understand which properties are historically or architecturally significant, and therefore worthy of preservation.

In 2010, the project created a record of each property within the Downtown Master Plan area. This included a history of the area, photographs, maps, and details about each building’s architectural style, materials, and any historical significance. The Historic Resources Survey project updated a previous record of the City’s historic properties that was completed in 1992 and last updated in 1996.

The survey was completed in two parts. Phase I included 155 properties mostly west of the two-block downtown commercial historic district. Phase II covered the remaining 498 properties.

Last spring, a subcommittee of Historic Preservation Commission and City Council members reviewed the survey findings and recommendations. The Phase I survey report (PDF) then was approved by the Historic Preservation Commission, Planning and Zoning Commission, and City Council in September 2010 as an addendum to the Downtown Master Plan.

Phase II of the survey was completed in 2010 as well, but the subcommittee meetings for that Phase were postponed while the City waited for funding. A Certified Local Government grant from the Texas Historical Commission, approved in June, is paying part of the cost to complete Phase II.

The subcommittee reviewed and approved the Phase II findings and recommendations in September, and the survey report will be presented to the Historic Preservation Commission on Oct. 25. The Phase I and Phase II survey reports recommend, in total, preserving about 10 percent of the properties in the Downtown Master Plan area.

Although adopting the informational Phase I and II survey reports does not obligate the City to act on any of the recommendations set forth in the report, the information will help City officials make well-informed decisions and preserve the most significant parts of Round Rock’s historic built environment.

For more information, contact Joelle Jordan in the Planning and Development Services Department at (512) 218-5422.

Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011

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