Preparing for the bids!

Today my architect sent me copies, for approval, of the terms for bidding on construction of the Lesmeister Guesthouse project! Eighteen months of planning, negotiating, and more planning finally coming to…a start.

The contract will call for completion of the project within 180 days, so it’s pretty certain that the Lesmeister will finally be open during 2012! The estimate on the cost of the Lesmeister is $660,000, but since it’s a historic building in a national historic district, tax credits may pay nearly half of that for me. Thank goodness federal and state belt-tightening has, so far, not eliminated these credits to encourage rehabilitation and reuse of deteriorating old structures nationwide. So often sentiment and history are the first things to go when funding is tight.

So I’ll put in my plug here for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. I’m a member, and wish more people cared. I remember 1965, when even as a child I fought our city’s plan to demolish our 1872 courthouse in order to provide more parking for the downtown merchants. Today, with manufacturing jobs scarce, that courthouse is the lynchpin for our whole county’s effort to bring in some outside money through the wonderful brotherhood of tourism.

1872 Randolph County courthouse.

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