Group lists 44 buildings for historical society’s review
Results of a survey of Marion historic buildings were unveiled last week at a meeting in the community center.
Kristy Johnson, project architect for Ben Moore Studios, and Christy Davis, owner of Davis Preservation in Cottonwood Falls, said they sent their findings to the Kansas Historical Society’s historic resources inventory for review.
They nominated 44 buildings as contributors for a proposed historic district designation.
The Elgin Hotel and Marion County Courthouse, although in the survey area, are already listed as historic buildings before the survey.
Some of the buildings on the list were built as recently as the 1960s.
“To be eligible, the building has to be at least 50 years old,” Johnson said.
Johnson said buildings built as recently as 1969 are eligible.
Virtually all downtown buildings were included in the list.
The area surveyed includes Main St. from Walnut to 5th Sts., 3rd St. from Valley United Methodist Church to Marion City Library, and adjoining areas.
Johnson said the survey doesn’t automatically qualify the area for designation as a historic district.
The city, or a consultant hired by the city, will have to apply to the state historical society for the designation.
“That’s up to the city to do the application for the historical designation,” Johnson said.
Johnson said the city might want to hire a consultant to write the application, because it is very specific and must be done to the historical society’s standards.
The survey was commissioned in May through a grant from Kansas Historical Society. If the area is designated a historic district, building owners can apply for tax credits they can sell to pay for restoration work on the buildings.
Economic development director Randy Collett said building owners often are intimidated by their size of their buildings and the cost of renovations.