Historic Preservation

Archive Report

A Coming of Age

From Eccentricity to Influential Role

Preservation of buildings and other structures of historic, cultural or architectural significance has taken on a new importance in most American cities. This was amply illustrated in Washington, D.C., in 1983. In June Congress decided to spend $49 million to restore the last original wall of the U.S. Capitol—the West Front—rather than destroy it to build a $70 million extension to the building. In September the Old Post Office building, a steepled landmark built in 1899, was reopened with fanfare as a retail-entertainment-office complex. October brought the opening of a controversial office building that retained the facades of the townhouses which had long occupied the site. And in November the fight to save the rundown building that ...

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