Jefferson City preservation panel cites advances

Jefferson City’s Historic Preservation Commission celebrated successes Tuesday.

At the top of the list was the recent announcement by the state that maintenance and repair of the historic buildings at the Missouri State Penitentiary will be underway soon.

Council liaison to the commission Larry Henry Jr. noted that the council has received much more positive feedback from citizens than it has expected.

“Thanks to Mark (Schreiber), I can say during the time I was chair, something moved on the MSP,” said Chairman Ed Meyers.

Number two on the commission’s success list was the council-approved change to the city’s Chapter 8 ordinance regarding demolition applications, after more than a year of discussion and development.

Future applicants for demolition will be required to submit photos taken within the last 90 days of both the exterior and interior of structures 50-years-old and older. The owner also must include a detailed explanation of why the property could not be renovated and returned to economic viability.

And owners of the former Dix family farm and house at 3221 N. Ten Mile Drive have indicated they may include a memorial to the site’s history. City staff liaison Jayme Abbott visited with officials from Public Schools Retirement System following the commission’s October meeting, where it voiced concerns about the demolition application for the property.

These accomplishments and several others, like the National Register of Historic Places nomination for the Moreau Drive Neighborhood, were included in the annual Certified Local Government report to the State Historic Preservation Office in the Department of Natural Resources.

In other business, the commission:

• Renewed present officers for another term, including Meyers, Vice chairman Bill Case and Secretary Mary Schantz.

• Released 1207 E. Miller St., owned by the Diocese of Jefferson City, for demolition with the understanding that further property surrounding Immaculate Conception Church may come to the commission for demolition consideration in the future.

• Agreed to send thank-you letters to state and city officials involved with the release of funds to repair the designated prison buildings.

• Discussed the history and potential relocation of the Spanish-American War Memorial on Missouri Boulevard and will send a letter to the Missouri National Guard’s Museum of Missouri Military History to join any future conversation.

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