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Friday, June 6, 2014

Admiring Saint Paul: Historic Preservation Awards

Among other things, Saint Paul is known for its regal architecture, rich history, and prolific landmarks –characteristics that have charmed residents and tourists from the days of Pierre "Pig's Eye" Parrant. With a foot firmly planted in the past, Saint Paul residents and businesses continue to preserve and repurpose the iconic buildings and cultivate those traditions and resources.

The Saint Paul Heritage Preservation Committee (HPC) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) recently held the 24th annual Heritage Preservation Awards ceremony to highlight the work that residents and companies do to build on the city’s historical legacy. 

Here are a few highlights of this year’s honorees:              
Union Depot– This iconic Lowertown transit hub was transformed into a 21st century multi-modal mixed-use destination in 2012. After a $243 million investment, the Union Depot is home to businesses, Amtrak service, and will be a on the Green Line.

Francis M. Finch House – This 124 year-old home went through an extensive reworking, inside and out, to respect the building’s character and reveal its beauty. The owners kept the highest standard of craftsmanship to match the quality of the home’s designer, Cass Gilbert. 

Frank and Anna Shepard House – Built in 1880 as a private residence, this home spent the past 70 years in a variety of uses. Four years ago, the owners adapted the annex into a Montessori pre-school, restored the original 1880 structure into an elegant bed and breakfast, and rehabilitated the servant’s quarters into their own residence.

Also recognized were community organizer Karin DuPaul, author Karen Melvin for her book “Great Houses of Summit Avenue and the Hill District and the House of Hope Presbyterian Church.
For more information about the Heritage Preservation awards, visit or watch the video from the ceremony.

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