Historic Preservation Public Policy

Great Lakes Urban Exchange Looks at Building Rehabilitation

by Michael R. Allen

This month, the Great Lakes Urban Exchange (GLUE) has turned its attention toward the role that building rehabilitation plays in renewing the Rust Belt. Perhaps not surprising is that GLUE co-founder Sarah Szurpicki was inspired to examine the policies that shape rehabilitation after a recent visit to St. Louis.

Readers not familiar with GLUE should peruse the organization’s excellent website, which features a blog that chronicles efforts across the larger Great Lakes region — large enough to include St. Louis — to promote economic and cultural development, public policy change and inter-city dialogue.

GLUE’s mission statement starts with the goal “to bolster regional identity amongst older industrial urban centers in the American Great Lakes region by connecting the people who love them to each other.” Second is “to advocate for policies that promote sustainable and equitable growth for Great Lakes cities.” Clearly, in St. Louis we see how rehabilitation serves both of these goals.

As part of the feature on rehabilitation, Sarah interviewed me on historic preservation efforts in St. Louis, Missouri’s model historic rehabilitation tax credit and federal legislation that would make existing rehabilitation tax credits more useful to older cities. That interview can be found here.