Campus to host forum on historic preservation

Sheldon HallA free public issues forum on campus will discuss “Historic Preservation as an Economic Development Tool” from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, March 16.

The forum will take place in the college’s Sheldon Hall, itself a national historic landmark whose construction began in 1911.

Sponsored by the SUNY Oswego Center for Business and Community Development, the event will feature experts detailing successful preservation projects, available funding, regulations and related topics.

The workshop is targeted toward developers, people interested in history and historic preservation, and those interested in economic development and tourism, said Nancy Bellow, director of the college’s Center for Business and Community Development.

An 8:30 a.m. panel titled “We’ve Done It” will feature success stories and tips from Murray Gould of Gould and Associates, Randall Crawford of Crawford and Stearns Architects, and Gary Beasley of Neighbors of Watertown.

A panel discussion on “Funding, Regulations and Considerations” will begin at 9:45 a.m. Scheduled participants will include Nicholas Petragnani of Community Preservation Corp.; Christina Cappella-Peters of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; and Michael Long, representing the City of Auburn.

The session will wrap up with an 11 a.m. roundtable discussion, “What’s Next?” which is designed to explain how preservation projects benefit local communities and to suggest ways attendees can begin or continue preservation efforts.

Historic preservation remains a topical issue in Central New York because the region has so many historic buildings, Bellow noted. Since schools of thought range from preserving buildings at all costs to tearing down structures and starting anew, the workshop is geared to create discussion as well as provide information, she added.

The public issues forum is presented in partnership with Operation Oswego County, the Greater Oswego Chamber of Commerce and the Oswego County Department of Promotion and Tourism.

Reservations should be made by March 13 by calling SUNY Oswego’s Center for Business and Community Development at 312-3492.

- END -

(Posted: Feb 24, 2006)