Nominate a landmark for Seven to Save

The New Hampshire Preservation Alliance’s deadline is Monday, Sept. 14, for nominations for its Seven to Save program, which spotlights endangered historic properties and helps attract new investment and reuse options for community landmarks.

Criteria for Seven to Save include the property’s historical or architectural significance, severity of the current threat and the extent to which the Seven to Save listing would help in preserving or protecting the property.

Typically, nominated properties are owned by nonprofits, municipalities or commercial entities, and have local advocates willing to work toward a creative "save" rather than deterioration and possible demolition. The 2015 list will be announced in mid-October.

New Hampshire is defined by its town halls, old mills, historic downtowns, village grange halls and churches, and mix of agrarian, educational and industrial buildings. Residents and visitors alike appreciate and enjoy these aspects of our built environment.

But many older structures need help, and until they get it, may detract from surrounding property values and limit economic growth. They represent, in many cases, a prime opportunity for community involvement in jump-starting new efforts to rehabilitate and reuse a valuable resource.

"We see the Seven to Save program as a positive way to encourage new investment in historic buildings," said Maggie Stier, field service representative and coordinator of Seven to Save for the N.H. Preservation Alliance.

"Obstacles to the continuing or new use of many of these landmarks can frequently be overcome through creative planning, new investment and the hard work of local advocates."

The Seven to Save program is now in its tenth year, with nearly half of the previously listed sites now considered saved. Examples of successful Seven to Save outcomes include the town halls in Kensington, Middleton and Wolfeboro, Pandora Mill in Manchester, the Langdon Meetinghouse and the Great Stone Dwelling at Enfield Shaker Museum.

It often takes several years to make significant progress toward preservation. Properties from recent years whose future is still uncertain include the Farley Building in Hollis, the 70-meter ski jump at Gunstock Mountain Resort and the Gas Holder in Concord.

Nomination forms may be downloaded at www.nhpreservation.org.