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Ticonderoga seeks historic designation

TICONDEROGA - Ticonderoga is seeking to have its downtown added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Steven Engelhart, executive director of the Adirondack Architectural Heritage, is preparing the application for the town. He hopes to have it complete by the end of March.

"You have a very rich history and many cultural resources," Engelhart told the Ticonderoga town board Feb. 11. "I'm having fun getting to know Ticonderoga."

The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation.

Engelhart said there are many myths about the National Register, mostly about government limits on property within a historic district. Generally, he said, historic districts bring many benefits to a community.

Having a property on the National Register makes owners eligible for tax incentives and gives them access to loan programs, Engelhart said.

The only property restrictions, he said, would come if property owners enter into restrictive funding programs.

Engelhart is researching the history of Montcalm Street buildings as he prepares the National Register application. PRIDE of Ticonderoga is assisting. "Collectively a district must have a high design integrity and most buildings need to be 50 years old or older," he explained. "It helps if the buildings are connected to Ticonderoga's history or community life in some important way."

The passage of the National Historic Preservation Act in 1966 established the National Register and the process for adding properties to it. Of the more than one million properties on the National Register, 80,000 are listed individually. The remainder are contributing members within historic districts. Each year approximately 30,000 properties are added to the National Register as part of districts or through individual listings.

The Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH) is the non-profit historic preservation organization based in Keeseville. AARCH was formed in 1990 with a mission to promote better public understanding, appreciation and stewardship of the Adirondack's unique and diverse architectural heritage.

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