Arlington Provides New Historic Preservation Grants for 12 Projects

Published on October 11, 2023


Twelve projects have been selected as the first grant recipients of the Arlington County Historic Preservation Fund (HPF). The fund was created to provide a unique opportunity to invest in the future of preservation in Arlington County by administering funds in support of community and individual projects related to the County’s history, built environment, and cultural heritage.

"From big picture storytelling and research projects to individual building preservation, this inaugural group of Historic Preservation Fund recipients demonstrates the breadth of Arlington’s unique history and many ways we can preserve our story for generations to come," County Manager Mark Schwartz said.

The projects were selected by a review committee based on scoring specific grant criteria that focused on each project’s quality, equity and inclusion, community impact, and managerial competence. The review committee was comprised of County staff from multiple departments, including the Department of Community Planning, Housing and Development, the Center for Local History, and the County Manager’s Office, who served as designees of the County Manager. Selected projects include both capital and non-capital projects.

"The grantees represent a wide range of creative projects, several of which have a strong focus on cultural heritage, and we are excited about the opportunity to financially assist these recipients and further the County’s historic preservation goals," said Historic Preservation Section Supervisor Cynthia Liccese-Torres.

One of the primary goals of the recommended draft Historic and Cultural Resources Plan (HCRP) is to provide incentives for preservation to residents, property owners, developers, and community organizations by growing the Historic Preservation Fund. The recommended draft HCRP is being considered for adoption by the County Board this fall. Once adopted, the Historic Preservation Program can explore potential ongoing revenue sources for the fund.

2023 HPF Grantees

  • 2737 23rd Road North House Capital Project (Capital project, $49,250, Required to provide a 100% match): This project will work to preserve the historic home at 2737 23rd Road North in the Maywood Local Historic District by repairing and restoring exterior building elements, promoting racial and social equity in the award and execution of the crafts work, and providing information to the community about the history of the house, trolley line, restrictions on sales of homes to specific ethnicities, the construction of I-66, the relocation of homes onto subdivided property, preservation, and repair of the home . Property owners Joseph and Beth Andrews will invite students from Arlington Tech and other similar programs to view the work at various stages, and the community will be able to learn about the project through social media and signage that will be translated into multiple languages.
  • Arlington Historical Web & Mobile App (Non-Capital project, $25,000): Created by Vlepos LLC, which is administered by local Arlington historian Peter Vaselopulos, this project is a web and mobile app framework for publishing location-based history content. The project will share and tell neighborhood and community stories, both familiar and lesser known. Content will come from scholars, writers, artists, community members, and students.
  • Barcroft Community House Capital Project (Capital project, $23,027, Required to provide a 100% match): The Barcroft School and Civic League (BSCL) is restoring the Barcroft Community House, a Local Historic District, by preserving the unique historical exterior so that it can continue to be actively used by a diverse community. Educational information and project updates will be shared in Barcroft News, the monthly neighborhood newsletter, and multiple community outreach events will showcase improvements once complete.
  • Dominion Hills: Historic Interpretation Project (Non-Capital project, $6,600): The Dominion Hills Civic Association will work to create three historic markers near the former location of the Febrey-Lothrop Estate. This land represents a rich swath of Arlington’s history, and the signage will include information about the Powhatan people, the Civil War, and the 20th century. These new markers will allow residents and visitors to share in this forgotten history.
  • Fraber House, 1612 North Quincy Street (Non-Capital project, up to $21,000; Capital project, $29,215+, required to provide a 100% match): Property owners Charu and Colin McDermott will work with a professional historic preservation consultant to develop a Building Envelope Analysis of the Fraber House, a Local Historic District constructed around 1913 in Cherrydale. The results will create a long-term preservation plan for the Craftsman-style bungalow, support the recommendations of the accompanying capital project, and include completion of a Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit application to the Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Neighbors and the broader Arlington community can follow along via the Cherrydale neighborhood newsletter and at community meetings. The capital project will provide partial funding for an aspect of the exterior restoration of the historic property.
  • George Mason University: Curated Data Archive of Black Mobility in Arlington County (Non-Capital project, $25,000): George Mason University will conduct local research and create a curated data archive of Black mobility, migration, and displacement for commissioning future contemporary art projects that visually interpret Black mobility within the Arlington landscape. The database and research, which will include maps, oral histories, Census data, photographs, historic Black newspapers, travel guides such as The Green Book, and more, will be a significant learning source for the Arlington community.
  • Halls Hill-High View Park (HHHVP) National Register of Historic Places Nomination and Outreach Campaign (Non-Capital project, $25,000): The John M. Langston Citizens Association (JMLCA) will work to achieve designation of the Hall’s Hill-High View Park neighborhood in the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places. The HHHVP neighborhood has made significant contributions to Arlington’s history and its built environment and is one of the three remaining “historically Black” communities in Arlington.
  • Historic Green Valley Project (Non-Capital project, $20,908): The Green Valley Civic Association will celebrate African American life and culture in Arlington County through a community’s lens. It will highlight 17 landmarks, conduct walking and virtual tours, offer neighborhood history workshops, digitize historical newspapers or other print media, and create interpretative signs, history guide maps, ground markers, along with new history webpages, resources, and educational material on the existing Green Valley Civic Association website.
  • Langston Boulevard Alliance: Website Overhaul/History on Renaming of Lee Highway/History of Legacy Businesses (Non-Capital project, $25,000): The Langston Boulevard project will collect oral histories and use new media to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving two important pieces of Langston Boulevard’s history—the renaming of Lee Highway to Langston Boulevard and the history of the corridor’s legacy businesses—on the Langston Boulevard Alliance’s new website.
  • Lyon Park History Preservation and Education Centennial Project (Non-Capital project, $25,000): Lead by the Lyon Park Citizens Association, this project will preserve a century of historical materials stored at the Lyon Park Community House. The project will also share the story of Lyon Park by installing narrative signs on park grounds and amplifying the narrative of Zitkala-sa (1876-1938), an indigenous writer and activist who lived in Lyon Park. This will be in partnership with the Arlington Department of Parks and Recreation.
  • We Are Barcroft: A 60 Acre History of People & Place (Non-Capital project, $25,000): Artist and author Sushmita Mazumdar will plan, launch, and develop a culturally specific arts-based community for the residents of Barcroft Apartments to engage in creative, community building projects through documenting cultural heritage and sharing oral histories. The project strives to conduct oral histories and develop a series of videos, exhibits, workshops, talks, and more.

About the Grants

As part of the FY 2023 County budget adoption process, the County Board approved initial funding to establish the fund and authorized the County Manager to approve and disburse grant funds consistent with the guidelines.

To be eligible for grant funds, projects were required to align with the stated goals of the Historic and Cultural Resources Plan.

  • Capital projects: Eligible properties for bricks-and-mortar grants include individual Local Historic Districts (LHDs), contributing properties to an LHD, properties that hold a recorded historic preservation easement, and properties eligible to become an LHD and/or hold a recorded easement.
  • Non-capital projects: Examples of eligible projects could include historic research, oral histories, historic markers, nominations to the National Register of Historic Places, educational activities, and institutional planning.

Grants awarded to capital projects had maximum support of $100,000 and required a 100% match. Grants awarded to non-capital projects had maximum support of $25,000, with no matching funds required.

For more information, email or call the Historic Preservation Program office at 703-228-3549.

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