In January 2011, a district of properties along Hewitt Avenue, Wetmore, Rockefeller, Oakes and Lombard was listed on the National Register of Historic Places by the National Parks Service. The district includes buildings which represent development in Everett from 1894 to 1959, including a collection of vernacular commercial structures and buildings associated with fraternal and labor organizations. The district was also added to the Washington Heritage Register in October 2010.
Forty-two buildings, one site (Speakers' corner) and one structure (the BNSF railway and tunnel) make up the district. thirty of these resources are recognized as "contributing," meaning they retain the integrity of their original architectural design and materials, and 12 buildings are classified as "non-contributing," because they have been signficantly altered. In addition, two buildings in the district, the Commerce Building and Fire Station No. 2, are historic buildings already listed individually on the National Register.
Being recognized nationally as a National Register Historic District is an honor to property owners and the city. This is Everett's second National Register District, the first one being the Rucker Hill district which contains single-family homes. There are also other potential benefits to listing. For comemrcial properties there is a federal tax credit program for rehabilitation. The City of Everett also offers special valuation, a property tax reduction program for rehabilitation. Heritage sites also draw a significant number of tourists, whoc benefit the local economy with their visits.
Listing a property on the National Register does not impose federal or state restrictive covenants or easements. However, listing in the National Register of Historic Places does assure protective review of a property if a federal or state action, including funding, should have a potential adverse effect on the property's hsitoric value.
The City of Everett nominated the Hewitt Avenue Historic District for the National Register after working on the project with property owners, the public and the Everett Historical Commission throughout 2010. Bola Architecture + Planning of Seattle was hired as a consultant with a grant from the state Department of Architecture and Historic Preservation to write the nomination.
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