An historical organization in Adair County has received a national award for its efforts at restoring a nearly 120-year old building in the heart of downtown Greenfield. The National Trust for Historic Preservation presented its Preservation Honor Award for the restoration of the Warren Cultural Center in Greenfield, to the E.E. Warren Opera House Association. The project is one of 18 award winners honored by the National Trust during its 2013 National Preservation Conference in Indianapolis, IN.
E.E. Warren Opera House in Greenfield
Attending on behalf of the E.E. Warren Opera House Association was Board President Nancy Queck and Catherine Howe, former vice-president. Co-recipients are Greenfield Chamber of Commerce and Main Street; INVISION Architecture; the Iowa State Historic Preservation Office; and Lang Construction Group.
The National Preservation Awards are bestowed on distinguished individuals, nonprofit organizations, public agencies and corporations whose skill and determination have given new meaning to their communities through preservation of our architectural and cultural heritage.
In the face of a declining economy, the community of Greenfield took action to preserve the historic E.E. Warren Opera House. Built in 1896, the Romanesque-inspired building was a local landmark for decades, but eventually time took its toll and the building was showing its age. When Greenfield was made a Main Street Iowa community in 1996, the town redoubled its efforts to preserve the Opera House.
Led entirely by volunteers, the E.E. Warren Opera House Association raised $4.5 million. The project’s diverse mix of private and public funding – including state and federal historic tax credits – enabled an expert rehabilitation. The project also catalyzed several other downtown rehabs, including a boutique hotel and new restaurant.
The winners of the National Preservation Awards will appear online at www.PreservationNation.org/awards.