Preservation Plan

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Historic Preservation at a Crossroads: The 2009-2013 New York State Historic Preservation Plan has been prepared to assist all New Yorkers interested in identifying, protecting, enhancing, and promoting the state's historic and cultural resources. It is based on the premise that historic preservation is in New York State's best interest: it is a powerful but as yet underutilized community and economic development strategy that should be an integral part of New York State's revitalization, smart growth, and sustainability efforts.

Although the plan has been prepared mainly by the New York State Historic Preservation Office and will guide much of that agency's work over the next five years, it was developed with extensive public input and diverse expertise, including guidance from the New York State Board for Historic Preservation, a historic preservation plan advisory committee with broad representation, and numerous preservation and related organizations.

Responding directly to the key themes and threats heard throughout the planning process, the plan's vision, goals, and implementing actions establish a dynamic framework that has been purposefully designed to broaden engagement in and support for historic preservation. It provides context and direction as well as substantial background information and supporting resources for anyone involved in, interested in becoming involved in, or wanting to learn more about historic preservation. Because of this intentionally broad focus, it will likely be impossible to achieve the vision, goals, and implementing actions without considerable collaboration and initiative from many preservation partners, including diverse individuals, historic preservation professionals, state and local governments, developers, municipal historians, not-for-profit organizations, and others.

It is hoped that the 2009-2013 New York State Historic Preservation Plan will be a focal point for extensive collaboration and action. Existing historic preservation partners may find it useful to consult the vision, goals, and implementing actions to determine how they can best help achieve the goals set forth in the plan. Others may prefer to peruse and learn from the background information and supporting materials, with an emphasis on the Call to Action – Getting Involved section and the appendices.

How the Plan is Organized

The 2009-2013 New York State Historic Preservation Plan is both a five-year action plan and an educational resource. It consists of an introduction, two major sections, and a series of appendices that contain helpful supporting information.

Part I is the heart of the plan. It describes how the plan was developed and sets forth the Vision, Goals, and Implementing Actions that will guide historic preservation efforts across New York State over the next five years. It also includes information about how various preservation partners can become involved in historic preservation and help advance historic preservation goals.

Part II provides an introduction for those who may be less familiar with historic preservation. Sections briefly describe what historic preservation is, why it's important to New York State's economy, and who's involved in historic preservation. It also provides an overview of New York State's wide range of historic and cultural resources and highlights recent preservation accomplishments.

The Appendices include: a bibliography; information about important agencies and organizations involved in historic preservation; information on where to learn more about historic preservation; a set of maps; summaries of key historic and cultural resource laws; a list of statewide surveys and context studies; and the three background memoranda summarizing key themes, threats, and findings from the plan preparation process. The maps show the number of places listed in the National Register of Historic Places by county, National Historic Landmarks by county, archeological sites by county, Certified Local Governments by county, and number of places documented by the Historic American Building Survey, Historic American Engineering Record, and Historic American Landscape Survey.


Historic preservation will be understood as a rational approach for protecting irreplaceable historic and cultural resources and managing change, offering proven, fiscally conservative, cost-effective community improvement strategies that:

  • Revitalize, strengthen, and enhance New York's cities, villages, and rural hamlets while making use of existing infrastructure and transportation systems and conserving farmland, open space, and natural areas;
  • Produce a wide range of distinctive, centrally located, affordable and market-rate housing alternatives as well as cost-effective retail and office space options for the entrepreneurs and small businesses that are becoming the economic generators of the 21st century;
  • Generate substantial, well-paying jobs, income, tourism, and tax revenues;
  • Support New York State's efforts to competitively position, enhance, and promote local communities within the maturing global economic environment;
  • Enhance and complement numerous programs that promote and strengthen local communities;
  • Represent the most intensive form of recycling, reusing existing building materials and conserving embodied energy, history, and infrastructure.

Historic preservation will be a significant catalyst for, and contributor to, New York State's economic recovery, environmental sustainability, and smart growth efforts.

Historic and cultural resources, including National Historic Landmarks, historic sites, historic districts, archeological resources and heritage areas, will be protected and recognized as foundations of community pride, authenticity, and local character - as important economic and educational assets, tourism destinations, and community anchors that strongly complement and support New York State's extensive arts, culture, education, recreation, entertainment, and natural resources.

New York State will strengthen policies, laws, and incentive programs that protect and revitalize cities, villages, and rural hamlets as centers of investment, infrastructure, education, culture, creativity, and entrepreneurial and social interaction.


  • Catalyze New York's state and local economies using historic preservation, heritage development, and tourism.
  • Expand incentives, technical assistance programs and policies to stimulate rehabilitation and reuse in older and historic residential and commercial areas and to encourage the preservation and interpretation of archeological sites.
  • Integrate historic preservation into smart growth policies, local and regional planning, and decision-making to enhance economic competitiveness, community sustainability, and quality of life.
  • Strengthen collaboration and partnerships among preservation and related organizations.
  • Expand and strengthen education, outreach, and capacity building efforts.
  • Integrate historic and cultural resource preservation into New York's sustainability and green building efforts.
  • Increase awareness, identification, interpretation, preservation, protection, and stewardship of both prehistoric and historic sites and artifacts located on private and state-owned lands.



For inquiries on preservation planning and outreach contact:
Amy E. Facca (518) 237-8643 ext. 3109 Lorraine Weiss (518) 237-8643 ext. 3122

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