Establishing Fall River’s first local historic district
When the Preservation Society of Fall River re-formed in 2007, its major project was to create a MGL 40C Local Historic District. The Massachusetts Historic Commission recognizes Local Historic Districts as one of the top measures in protecting historic properties and neighborhoods. The project entailed hundreds of volunteer man-hours for surveying of property owners, updating “Form B” historic inventory forms, and creating the Historic District Study Report among other MHC requirements. After nearly 10 years the Society did indeed accomplish the goal of establishing the city’s first (Highlands) Local Historic District.
The next steps for Local Historic District include: expanding its borders, identifying other neighborhoods that would benefit from establishing Local Historic District status, enhancing streetscapes, and application for Certified Local Government Status.
Aside from obvious historic preservation efforts, adoption of Local Historic District status buoys property values, increases skilled labor need, improves community pride, increased heritage tourism, and creates real estate niche market.