Restore Jacksonville 2012

The City of Jacksonville has an immense number of older buildings over 50 years old; Our locally designated historic districts and landmarks include over 8,000 properties. Additional historic neighborhoods such as Arlington, San Marco, Ortega, Murray Hill, Durkeeville, and East Jacksonville, increase the number of structures by an exponential amount. These buildings have unique features that give these areas special character, but also require an appreciation, understanding and skill set by contractors and other building professionals. While much of the costs associated with new construction work today go directly to materials and products produced outside the city, historic preservation and rehabilitation projects generally center on specialized repair work and the retention of historic fabric, which means more dollars going to hire local workers and less construction debris going to our landfills.

Published April 25, 2012 in History -

Historic Preservation not only makes good economic sense but is also a very sustainable practice.

In October 2007, the City helped fund the first Restore Jacksonville event.  This three day program provided valuable information for homeowners, preservation enthusiasts, investors and contractors, from researching the history of one’s home to navigating the City’s review processes.  Five years later, the timing is perfect for holding a second Restore Jacksonville conference.  This time taking it one step further to show how an old house can also be a green home.

Barnett Bank Building image courtesy of Nomeus.

In April 2011, the City of Jacksonville applied for a State of Florida Preserve America Grant to host a local historic preservation and sustainability conference.  The basic goals and focus areas of the conference include:

1. Showcase how old buildings are inherently green

2. Showcase the best practices for making old buildings more energy efficient

3. Provide a training for contractors and other professionals working on historic buildings

4. Educate owners of older buildings on how to properly maintain and restore their structures

5. Inspire students/unemployed to pursue specialized building trades and increase the restoration workforce

6. Provide a better understanding of the Historic District Design Regulations and Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) review process

7. Educate the public on historic preservation and the economic benefits of historic preservation as outlined as an objective of Jacksonville’s Comprehensive Plan

During the first week of May 2012, homeowners and building professionals will have an excellent opportunity to learn more about how preserving older buildings was one of the first green concepts, how to make an old house more efficient, and how sustainability begins with preservation.  Why stop with recycling plastic and aluminum when you can reuse an entire building, capitalizing on its unique character, original green design, old growth wood, existing infrastructure, urban setting and embodied energy?  

This five day conference is filled with educational and entertaining sessions with nationally known speakers and local experts.  The intense two-day training on Wednesday and Thursday will cover historic preservation and energy efficiency topics that enable contractors and other building professionals to become better experts for their clients and avoid costly mistakes.  The general public sessions on Saturday will help homeowners make wiser choices for their older home, while learning more about Jacksonville’s architectural heritage.  The Restoration Resource Expo Hall will introduce attendees to products and services that help restore, repair and “green” old buildings.  Sunday’s events will provide interesting site visits to see first hand how “old” and “green” work together.  Friday’s speaker on downtown revitalization and the economic benefits and sustainable practices of historic preservation are not to be missed.  Lastly, special events include the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission’s Annual Preservation Awards on Thursday evening.


DATE: May 2-6, 2012

COSTS:  Registration fees are $25 for general public weekend with early, “bring-a-friend” and student discounts or $TBD for full 5-day access including contractor training on Wednesday and Thursday; Additional costs may apply for special events.

ESTIMATED ATTENDANCE:  25-50 for the building professional training; 300 general

WHERE: Main Library Downtown Conference Floor

Wednesday – Thursday (May 2 and 3) 7AM-4:30PM –Contractor/Building Professional training

• Wednesday: Historic Preservation Foundation and Fundamentals

o Core training to provide a better understand of the background, basic principals, review processes and recommended practices related to historic preservation.

o Speakers:  Lisa Sheppard, Senior Historic Preservation Planner; Joel McEachin, Historic Preservation Manager; Jason Teal, Office of General Counsel; Jim Schock, Acting Chief of Building Inspection; Mark Shelton, Planning Manager Development Services Division; Laura Lavernia, Preservation and Education Coordinator, Riverside Avondale Preservation; and Rob Irion, AAA Construction School, Inc

• Thursday: Energy Efficiency in Historic Buildings

o Sessions to provide a better understand of how historic buildings were meant to function and to learn how best to weatherize and make them more energy efficient in a mostly hot and humid climate.

o Speakers include: Walter Sedovic and Jill Gotthelf, Walter Sedovic Architects

Wednesday (May 2) 5PM-8PM –Conference Promotion at Artwalk

• Registration table in Main Library promenade off Laura Street

• Author, Ennis Davis will be selling and signing his new book:  Reclaiming Jacksonville

• Book photographer, Nomeus will be displaying and selling his work

Thursday (May 3) 5PM-8PM -Annual Preservation Awards Ceremony & (Recipient Reception)

Friday (May 4) Times TBD -Downtown revitalization/planner day focus

• Friday 7:30AM-9:30AM – Donovan Rypkema, Principal of PlaceEconomics Presentation on “Downtown

Revitalization, Economic Benefits of Historic Preservation and Sustainability”

• Friday afternoon time TBD –Wayne Wood and Terry Lorince, Executive Director of DVI: Session on “The Role of the Arts and Innovation in Transforming Jacksonville’s Urban Core”

• Friday afternoon time TBD –Steve Mouzon, Author of “the Original Green” Session on “Repairing Sprawl”

Saturday (May 5) 8AM-5PM General Public Conference/Restoration Product Expo

• 9AM -Opening Session with Steve Thomas of This Old House, Renovation Nation and Save Our History Speaking on “A Home Built to Last is a Green Home”

• Noon –Luncheon with Steve Mouzon, Architect, Urbanist; blogger; Author of The Original Green speaking on “Why Preservation is Essential to Sustainability”

• 10AM-Noon/1PM-5PM –Educational Sessions for general public covering a variety of topics related to local history, historic preservation, older buildings, green technology, energy efficiency and sustainable practices

Sunday (May 6) 1PM-4PM –Tour and workshop

• Historic and Sustainability Tour highlighting buildings and sites located in our local historic districts and the downtown which balance historic character and green concepts

• Jane Jacob’s Walk, A ULI event offering an opportunity to experience downtown Jacksonville as a pedestrian.  This tour will celebrate the successful pedestrian aspects of our downtown and explore some of its challenges.

• Downtown Walking Tour, with tour guide Gary Sass of AdLib Tours

• Window Workshop with local window specialists.  Instructional and hands-on workshop covering repair techniques and energy efficiency methods.  (tentative location: Riverside Avondale Preservation’s Buckland House)


Friday Speakers for Contractor Training and Saturday Educational Session:

Walter Sedovic, FAIA, LEED
, Principal & CEO Walter Sedovic Architects PLLC; previously a Historical Architect for the National Park Service.  

Walter is dedicated to historic preservation and sustainable design. His work and firm are recognized as representing the vanguard of infusing preservation projects with green building approaches and  ideologies, resulting in enriched educational and cultural opportunities, and strong community ties. Walter is an internationally sought-after speaker and is the Guest Editor of the Association for Preservation Technology International’s special edition Bulletin on Sustainable Preservation. He received training in historic preservation from the University of Kansas and the International Center for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property in Rome, Italy

Jill Gotthelf, AIA FAPT, Principal at Walter Sedovic Architects; Chair of APTI’s Technical Committee on Sustainability.  

Jill sets a prodigious standard for the open exchange of ideas among peers, clients & constituents, resulting in projects, workshops, presentations & publications that embody the essence of sustainable  preservation. Ms Gotthelf embraces a holistic view of sustainability, pushing beyond the limits of the traditional definition to establish a balance between economics, environment, social and cultural equity, authenticity, and education. Ms Gotthelf has lectured and published widely on the subject of preservation and sustainability

Friday Speaker for ULI breakfast, Melissa Ross show and opening reception
Donovan Rypkema
, principal of PlaceEconomics, a Washington, D.C.-based real estate and economic development-consulting firm; author of “The Economics of Historic Preservation: A Community Leader’s Guide, published by the National Trust for Historic preservation”

His firm specializes in services to public and non-profit sector clients who are dealing with downtown and neighborhood commercial district revitalization and the reuse of historic structures. In 2004 Rypkema established Heritage Strategies International, a new firm created to provide similar services to world-wide clients.   Today Mr. Rypkema is recognized as an industry leader in the economics of preserving historic structures. Since 1983 he has provided ongoing consulting services to the National Trust for Historic Preservation and its National Main Street Center.

Saturday Opening Session Speaker choices:

(1st choice) Steve Thomas
–Host of This Old House for 14 years and Renovation Nation for 2 years; hosted and co produced the Save Our History series on The History Channel. He has also authored the best-selling books: This Old House Kitchens and This Old House Bathrooms. His column for This Old House magazine, "House Calls with Steve" was tremendously popular with readers.  Steve received his bachelor's degree in philosophy from Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

Currently, Steve advocates for green renovation techniques while educating and entertaining his audiences nationally. Steve imparts his unique viewpoint in each keynote address or personal appearance. With very practical advice, he inspires homeowners to spend their green dollars wisely.  Steve has crafted several unique PowerPoint presentations for business, professional, trade, consumer audiences, and students to bring them up to date on green building trends.

Saturday Luncheon Speaker:

Steve Mouzon
– Architect, Urbanist; blogger; Author of The Original Green – a book about the inherent passive energy features of historic buildings.  

He founded the New Urban Guild, which helped foster the Katrina Cottages movement. The Guild hosts Project:SmartDwelling, which works to redefine the house to be much smaller and more sustainable. Steve founded and is a board member of the Guild Foundation; it hosts the Original Green initiative. Steve speaks regularly across the US and abroad on sustainability issues.  The Original Green – “Originally, before the Thermostat Age, the buildings we built had no choice but to be green, otherwise people would freeze to death in the winter, die of heat strokes by summer, starve to death, or other really bad things would happen to them. Today, as we are working to re-learn how to live sustainably, much of the focus is on the gadgetry of green: Gizmo Green. This notion that we can simply invent more efficient mechanisms, and throw in some bamboo to boot, is only a small part of real sustainability.”

Steve’s blog:

Sponsorship Opportunities

Multiple sponsorship opportunities are available.  Sponsorships can be in association with any of the conference’s training days, special events, speakers, sessions, session breaks or tours.  Sponsors will be listed on the conference website and program.  Placement in other print media may be limited due to printing date.  

For more information, please call Lisa Sheppard at 255-7843.

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Metro Jacksonville