We have been providing appraisal services for historic properties for quite a long time. The types we have apprised have ranged from houses to museums.
It should be noted that just because a property is designated as being of a historic nature does not mean that it is particularly protected, most are not.
Being registered on the National Register of Historic Places certainly suggests that the property is of historical significance. It, however, does not place restrictions on what a non-federal owner may or may not do with a property, including razing it. On the other hand, local governmental restrictions may preclude changes. There are over 90,000 properties on the National Register.
There is a more significant listing, one where a building, site or structure has been officially recognized by the United States Government for its outstanding historical significance. It is the National Historic Landmark listing. That list includes less than 3,000 of the properties on the National Register. That list includes not only historic buildings but also sites or even ships or shipwrecks.
About half of these National Landmark properties are in private hands.
Even being a National Landmark doesn’t guarantee the preservation of a property – it does, however, ensure a more thorough review of demolition proposals,but it does not prohibit demolition outright. On the other hand, if Federal Monies are involved a different set of rules applies and demolition may be prohibited.
The Gorman Group has been privileged to perform appraisals on a number of these properties – properties that are designated National Landmarks. They include: The Wright Cycle Company Complex in Dayton Ohio, the Nauvoo Historic District in Nauvoo, Illinois and the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago.
We have also performed several appraisals along the Illinois and Michigan Canal in the Pullman Historic District.
By far, the most interesting historic property we have appraised is the Auditorium Theatre in downtown Chicago. Built in the late 1800’s, not only is the theatre classified as a National Landmark on the National Registry, it is also classified as a Work of Art by the City of Chicago. It is considered by the city of Chicago to be its most significant historic structure. While the building was originally conceived as a as a state-of-the-art performance venue, it was recognized that to be economically feasible it would need financial assistance. The result was a multi-use structure including hotel and offices. The additions were intended to help fund performances and keep ticket prices affordable.
The Auditorium is not only an imposing building on Chicago’s famous Michigan Avenue, but the interior has numerous fine art touches.
Frank Llyod Wright Highrise
The Wright Cycle Company Complex in Dayton Ohio was in interesting assignment…particularly because it was not only an older building designated as a national landmark, but it was also new and modern. The front portion of the building was original while the rear had been completely rebuilt by the National Park District for a cost of over $5 million.
Historically significant homes that we’ve appraised include a number that were built for the 1933 World’s Fair in Chicago – the Century of Progress exhibit. The homes were relocated by barge from Chicago to Beverly Shores Indiana in 1935 right after the Fair closed. While not National Landmarks, they are on the National Register of Historic Places.
Even single-family properties can have an historic significance. For example, Ronald Reagan’s childhood home in Dixon, IL, (below) is considered a historical building.
The Gorman Group has the expertise to assist you in its valuation.