In her song “Big Yellow Taxi,” Joni Mitchell delivered this clarion call: “that you don’t know what you’ve got ‘till it’s gone.” While her lyrics mean different things to different people, her message of conservation and preservation remains as relevant as ever. I think of her message in the context of Wallingford, as a call for those who love and cherish this neighborhood, as I do, to take stock of what we have and advocate for its preservation.
This May, Historic Wallingford launched the Wallingford Historic District Feasibility Study to be directed by preservation consultant Northwest Vernacular, with financial support from King County organization, 4 Culture. The study will involve gathering previously compiled histories, historic resource surveys, and neighborhood plans followed by neighborhood walks to observe and document what survives. The social and cultural history of our community also will be a focus of the study, so we may better understand the people who built Wallingford and have called this place home. Using the information gathered, the study will offer guidance on what areas in the neighborhood might qualify for historic district designation, most likely through a listing in the National Register of Historic Places, which is an honorary designation. Such a designation could stimulate pride in our neighborhood and bring awareness to the value of Wallingford’s historic resources.
The goal of this is study is to gather information that can guide future preservation and historical interpretation efforts in Wallingford. In the coming weeks and months, we will continually reach out to you for input, support, and involvement. Public engagement and input are paramount, and we look forward to working with you on this project. Let’s make this a community-wide learning event!
Two public meetings will be held to explain the study. The first, a members meeting for Historic Wallingford members will be held Thursday, June 20th at 7pm, at the Blue Star Café and Pub on Stone Way and N. 46th. If you are not yet a member, you can join and RSVP online at www.historicwallingford.org. Your membership supports this volunteer organization as well offers you free and discounted access to Historic Wallingford activities. The second meeting will be held later in the summer at the Discovery House at 4401 2nd Ave NE. The date and time for this offering will be announced soon.
For more information and answers to FAQ—go to www.historicwallingford.org