The Hamlin Park Historic
District was approved for listing on the New York State Register of Historic
Places at the quarterly meeting yesterday. Now that it has been adopted by the
state, the application is on its way to National Park Service for listing on
the National Register. Hamlin Park is the first historic
district on the east side and is now one of the largest in the state.
properties within the district boundaries, approximately 1370 of them are
contributing structures, while only 190 are non-contributing as a result of
integrity loss, significant alterations, loss of feeling/character, etc. That
means there are now close to 1400 east side residents that can utilize the
state historic tax credit for homeowners, a 20% tax credit. Once listed on the
National Register, commercial property owners with contributing
structures/homes in the district will also be able to use an additional 20% tax
credit from the federal government for qualified rehab work.
Avenue, East Ferry Street, Humboldt Parkway, and roughly Main Street. Within
these boundaries are over 150 years of Buffalo history and an incredible
community that has been dedicated to keeping their neighborhood safe and
stable, all while preserving its beautiful homes and landscapes. It was
approved as a local historic district in 1998 within the same boundaries.
by Preservation Studios, pro
bono, with survey work and research beginning about two years ago. The process
has been a wonderful example of a public-private partnership as the cost of
materials and survey work was offset by a “Preserve New York” grant from the
Preservation League of New York State, which was matched by the City of
Register (NR) nominations, a period
of significance needed to be determined for the district. Typically, an
individual building listed on the NR uses the original year of construction for
its period of significance, while a historic district has a range of years. The
period of significance for Hamlin Park is ca.1860; 1895-1975, which is very
unique. 1860 relates to the approximate date of construction of the oldest
structure in the district, the Old Stone Farmhouse at 60 Hedley place, 1895
relates to the year many of the next oldest homes were built, and 1975 relates
to the end of the Model Cities Program (more on that later).
considerations/exceptions, individual buildings built within the last 50 years (1963)
are often not eligible for listing on the National Register in most cases and
the same goes for historic districts. Ending the period of significance for
Hamlin Park in 1975 is virtually unheard of and is likely the only one in the
state, maybe the country with that designation.
starting a short series on the history of Hamlin Park (about 5 installments)
that pulls directly from the National Register nomination. It covers the former
Driving Park where Hamlin Park gets its name, the early agrarian history of the
area then the shift to a residential development, post-war transformation, and
the future national designation is something Buffalo can be proud of,
especially as we have so few east side preservation success stories. As a soon
to be homeowner in Hamlin Park and someone who played a role in the nomination,
this something I’m very proud to have been involved in and years in the making.
Special thanks to the Preservation League of New York, the Hamlin Park
Community & Taxpayers Association, Preservation Buffalo Niagara, the New
York State Historic Preservation Office, and the City of Buffalo.