Greensboro has received funding to nominate another neighborhood for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places and a second grant to expand an existing historic district.
The Greensboro Planning Department received a National Parks Service African American Civil Rights grant of $40,000 to move forward with nominating the Benbow Park neighborhood to the National Register of Historic Places.
A preliminary step having Benbow Park placed on the National Register Study List has already been taken after the planning department’s 2019-2020 architectural survey of east Greensboro. That survey was funded by a federal Historic Preservation Fund grant and documented buildings designed and constructed by black architects.
The National Parks Service grant will be used to hire an architectural historian to prepare the nomination paperwork, to conduct additional oral history interviews and document sites of significance to the Civil Rights Movement in the neighborhood.
Benbow Park, according to Planning Department Senior Planner Mike Cowhig, is historically significant for several reasons including the Mid-Century Modern homes and churches designed and built by black professionals and the fact that the neighborhood was home to some of the leaders and participants in the Civil Rights Movement.
Cowhig said, “National Register listing is primarily an honor without an restrictions on private property. But it does make owners of historic properties potentially eligible for federal and state rehabilitation income tax credits. Tax credits are a financial incentive to encourage preservation of historic structures.”
The Planning Department has also received $14,000 in historic preservation funding to update its Downtown Greensboro Historic District National Register nomination. The original nomination was prepared in 1982 and amended in 2004.
Downtown Greensboro was resurveyed in 2017 and the Historic District was expanded. This expanded area was added to the National Register Study List a preliminary step on having the area designated as a National Historic District.