At NPF, we are tired of hearing that Nevada has no history. Like much of the Southwest region, Nevada is a young state compared to the rest of the United States. Much of our history, heritage and culture are rooted in the 20th Century. But in this short time, we have certainly created a history worth celebrating! Nevada embodies the high spirit of the West. Relaxed divorce laws, legalized gambling, organized crime, atomic testing, world class entertainment and a forever changing resort culture only scratch the surface of our historic past.
Old buildings foster and support this rich heritage and are essential components in remembering our history. The history is here! It’s in our old homes and neighborhoods, in our schools and offices, in our commercial and civic buildings. It’s all around us and bolsters the fabric of our communities. Let’s work together to preserve it.
Did you know that Las Vegas has about 70% of its old buildings still intact? Contrary to popular belief, we don’t blow up everything in unrestrained fashion. And because we are a fairly young state, a majority of our buildings have aged into historic significance only in the last decade or so. Which means the time to act is now!
Education is the foundation of successful preservation. Nevada Preservation Foundation works to help spread the word and educate Nevada’s residents, professionals and civic leaders on the importance of our history and the economic benefits of preservation. Throughout the year, NPF holds a variety of free and low cost events geared toward public education in preservation. Educational programs, films, and lectures combined with heritage tours, social meet ups and community events bring preservation education directly to the public.
Historic preservation isn’t just about saving old buildings. It’s about preserving our community, culture and identity. The benefits of architectural preservation reach far beyond the walls of the building being saved. Preservation is a tool in retaining our history and defining our culture. There is no single approach that works in all situations, but the goals and results are always the same.
Distinctive architecture gives a city character and cultivates a sense of pride and place for its residents. Preservation stabilizes neighborhoods and promotes diversity among homeowners. It helps expand tourism, promoting cultural and heritage tourism in Nevada. It helps to stimulate the economy, creating jobs and spaces for small businesses and entrepreneurs. And it is rooted in conservation and sustainable practices. The greenest building is the one that is already built. Historic preservation is a powerful tool in creating healthy cities, and our communities in Nevada deserve nothing but the best.