In accordance with its rich and relatively wealthy history, Ann Arbor is graced by many beautiful and often very old neighborhoods. As with many Michigan cities during recent decades, wealth has slowly seeped away. Yet the elegant beauty of the historic architecture remains, and it requires attention to preserve not only history, but also the vitality of Ann Arbor’s neighborhoods.
Many of these residential neighborhoods have been designated as local historic districts. Fortunately, their designation has made homes in these districts eligible for historic preservation funds. Since 1999, approximately 45 property owners in Ann Arbor have rehabilitated their historic properties by applying State Historic Preservation Tax Credits, which are available to the owners of properties in locally designated districts. Such necessary rehabilitation work has included the replacement of furnaces and sewer lines, roof and flashing work, siding repair and painting, foundation stabilization, plumbing, masonry repointing and window repair, among other repairs and updates.
Since 2009, historic residences in the Broadway Historic District, the Old Fourth Ward Historic District and the Old West Side Historic District have received such rehabilitation work. The average investment in each of the districts represented is $31,344 per homeowner – a substantial investment that is paying dividends for these districts and the broader community