2nd Pinal County Courthouse Receives Top Arizona Preservation Award

9 projects recognized at 31st Annual Governor’s Heritage Preservation Honor Awards
2013 Grand Award Presentation (photo caption below)
2013 Grand Award Presentation (photo caption below)
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PHOENIX - June 24, 2013 - PRLog -- Awards for historic preservation achievements were recently presented at the 31st Annual Governor’s Heritage Preservation Honor Awards at the 11th Annual Arizona Historic Preservation Conference in Mesa. Nearly 300 attended the June 14 awards luncheon held at the Hilton Phoenix/Mesa and hosted by the Arizona Preservation Foundation and State Historic Preservation Office/ Arizona State Parks.

A committee of historic preservation professionals and historians selected the nine award recipients. Arizona Governor Jan Brewer selected one of the nine to be the Grand Award Winner. Presenting the awards were Jim McPherson, board president of the Arizona Preservation Foundation; James Garrison, state historic preservation officer; and Bryan Martyn, director of Arizona State Parks.

The 2013 honorees are:

1891 Second Pinal County Courthouse Rehabilitation, Florence (Grand Award Winner)

Built in 1891, the courthouse was once in such disrepair that it was listed on the Arizona Preservation Foundation’s Most Endangered Historic Places. The project to rehabilitate the courthouse began in 2000 but would take a dozen years, multiple Heritage Fund grants, and a $5.5 million project approved by the Pinal County Board of Supervisors to complete. Meticulous planning and care were taken to restore the character-defining elements of the building. The finished project was unveiled in December of last year and is now Pinal County government offices.

Ak-Chin BIA Agent House Rehabilitation Project, Maricopa

In 1925, Native American labor was used to build the 1,400 square foot adobe building for a BIA agent who only lived in the house for a short time after it was complete. The house was a rental home for many years until was abandoned in the 1990s. By 2009, the house was seriously dilapidated. That same year work began to preserve the building beginning with a new roof. Over the next three years the work continued. It was dedicated in August 2012 and is now used as a community center offering interpretation of the house, BIA, and Native American communities.

Diving Lady, Mesa

Two and a half years ago a storm sheared the 1960 Diving Lady sign from its pole at the Starlite Motel in Mesa. The newly formed Mesa Preservation Foundation became the nexus of the effort to restore the sign. From then on, the hard work to raise $120,000 for the sign’s repair was undertaken. Neon artist Larry Graham, who apprenticed under the sign’s creator, was contracted to restore the sign. The Diving Lady’s inaugural dive came on April 2nd of this year and was witnessed by hundreds of spectators who had become enthralled with the community-wide effort to preserve this emblem of Mesa’s motoring past.

Emerson Court Historic Restoration, Phoenix

Emerson Elementary School opened in 1921 and, as the city of Phoenix grew, multiple additions were tacked on until the mid-1930s. The school closed in 1982 and after a stint as office space it became Phoenix Elementary School District #1’s main offices. In 2010, the district received voter-supported bond money to rehabilitate the school that included structural repairs, re-roofing, HVAC replacement, and interior updating. The district hired the architectural firm ADM Group and contractors McCarthy Building to complete the project. With the rehab complete, Emerson Court provides a central role to the district and remains a true community center.

Joseph G. Nucci, Tempe

To its great fortune the City of Tempe has had as its historic preservation officer, Joseph G. Nucci, since 2001. Joe is an architect and craftsman, whose experience in these fields have shaped his career as a preservationist. During his time with the City of Tempe Joe has listed over 30 properties on the Tempe Register of Historic Places and eight properties on the National Register of Historic Places. In addition, Joe is an educator, administrator, planner, and board member of the Historic Preservation Advisory Committee.

Hayden Flour Mill Interpretation and Event Venue Project, Tempe

Even though the Hayden Flour Mill property is one of the most significant historic places in Tempe, its abandoned presence has become a nuisance to the surrounding buildings and the image of the community as a whole. Due to the efforts of former mayor Hugh Hallman, the City of Tempe, the Rio Salado Foundation, and the Downtown Tempe Community, Inc., an interim plan was developed to interpret the site and provide a unique event venue for the community while awaiting a full scale rehabilitation project. Instead of an eyesore the site has become a part of the gateway entry into Tempe.

Matus/Meza House Rehabilitation, Tucson

Built in the early 1900s, the Matus/Meza House lay vacant for over 25 years until in 2007 it came to the attention of Tucson police officer Preston Hould, Officer Hould organized local youths to clean up the property and secure it from break-ins. Even after he was transferred to a different patrol area, Officer Hould continued working to save the house. In 2012, the City of Tucson used CDBG funds to rehabilitate the home. While many people from both the public and private sectors were involved in the project, none of it would have happened without the dedication of Officer Hould.

Picture Canyon Preservation Project, Flagstaff

Picture Canyon is a 2,800-foot long steep, narrow canyon with a semi-permanent stream so named because of the more than 120 Sinagua rock art panels east of Flagstaff. Located on State Trust Land, Picture Canyon was in such poor condition a decade ago that it had acquired the nickname “Sewer Canyon” as it had become a illegal dumping ground. In 2005, the Picture Canyon Working Group was formed to protect the canyon. The group consisted of members of various government agencies and non-profits. Through their efforts the canyon was cleaned up and environment restored. It is now owned and protected by the City of Flagstaff.

Reggie Mackay, Statewide

Reggie Mackay has been instrumental in rehabilitating many adobe buildings not just in Arizona but also in California and Nevada. For nearly three decades Reggie has left his personal mark of excellence on the historic adobe architecture of the southwest. Some of the buildings he’s worked on include the Clarke House, First Pinal County Courthouse, Furnace Creek Inn in Death Valley, Chapel of the Gila, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, and at least five Arizona State Parks sites.

All past award honorees are listed at http://azpreservation.org/awards

2013 Governor's Heritage Preservation Honor Awards, Grand Award Presentation, left to right: James Garrison, Arizona State Parks; Becky McCain, Concord General Contracting, Inc.; Jeff Swan, Swan Architects; Archie Carreon, Pinal County Engineer; Gabriel Trevizo, Concord General Contracting, Inc.; Ernie Feliz, Town of Florence; Bill Lukehart, Arcadis, Inc.; Dale Marr, Concord General Contracting, Inc.; Bryan Martyn, Arizona State Parks; and Jim McPherson, Arizona Preservation Foundation.
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Location:Phoenix - Arizona - United States
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