- Proposal for NY State and National Register of Historic Places for McKownville Country Club Highlands Historic District
The McKownville Improvement Association has always attempted to preserve the residential character of our neighborhood. Many of the houses were built during the early twentieth century, and the older parts of the neighborhood display a mix of home styles from that time. This blend of historic homes provides a pleasing contrast to the commercial development to the east and west, and increasing institutional growth to the north, and the recent high-density apartment development on Fuller Road in the City of Albany.
Volunteers worked with the New York State Historic Preservation
Office (SHPO) to create the documentation for the historic
district to be listed on
the National and State Registers of Historic Places.
Inclusion on these Registers will provide a measure of protection
for our unique neighborhood.
After consultation with the SHPO, the proposed district includes
Waverly Place, the southerly portions of Norwood, Glenwood,
Parkwood and Elmwood Streets, and the houses on the north side of
Western Avenue from number 1421 west to Elmwood
[maps of the proposed historic district - showing house numbers, or date of building for each house].
For more information about the National and State Registers of
Historic Preservation, including the implications for property
owners of a Historic District listing, please click on this link for a printable one-page
information sheet compiled from information published in the
websites of the National
Register of Historic Places, and the New York State Historic
4 Norwood Street, built in 1911
Comparable neighborhoods already established as Historic
Districts on the National Register are widespread.
For example, in Syracuse, the Berkeley Park Subdivision Historic District [another description of Berkeley Park],
and in Atlanta, the Inman Park-Moreland Historic District are similar in age and kind of development to this proposal for McKownville.
Notification of property owners, objections, and the review
The New York State Historic Preservation Office has now determined that this section of McKownville is eligible for listing on the National and State Registers of Historic Places, and the nomination process is underway, leading up to presentation of the completed nomination documents at a meeting of the State Review Board. Preparation of the documents supporting the proposal is now essentially complete and it is likely that the nomination will be presented at the State Review Board meeting in December 2021.
There was a public meeting held
on 14 September 2021 , for presentation of the proposal and
to answer questions on it, to which all property owners in the
proposed historic district were invited - the presentation slides
shown by the SHPO representatives at the meeting. The last
slide in the presentation contains contact information for the
SHPO persons who will be pleased to answer any questions on the
proposal that property owners in the intended historic district
All property owners in the proposed historic district, and local officials, have been sent a notification letter (dated September 30th) by the SHPO.
This mailing also included: information sheets on the criteria for National Register nomination,
a list of answers to frequently asked questions, and
information on the historic properties rehabilitation tax credit program (regrettably, McKownville north of Western Avenue is in a census tract which does not qualify for this program - see this map).
Under the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (amended 1980), private property owners must be given the opportunity to object to the proposed nomination of their properties. No owner is required to comment and owners don’t “vote” on the district. Rather, owners who object to the listing may submit a notarized statement stating that they are the owner of the subject property and that they object. Notarization is a requirement of the federal government and cannot be waived.
If a majority of the private property owners in the proposed
district file notarized objections, the district cannot be listed
on the National Register. In determining a majority, each owner is
counted once, regardless of how much or how little property he/she
owns. Objections are only counted toward the listing of the
district as a whole. If a majority does not object, no one owner
can exempt himself/herself from the district by means of a
notarized objection. These procedures are federal regulations that
cannot be altered by the SHPO.
If there are less than a majority of objectors, then the SHPO
review decision can take one of several options: reject the
proposal, ask for more information, list the district just with
the state, or also to send the forms to the National Park Service
for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. Once the
National Park Service receive the forms, they conduct a similar
We have some information about the builders and architects of the houses in the proposed historic district; a few appear to be Sears kit houses.
We hope that in the future additional portions of McKownville will be included in an enlarged Historic District.return to history page