Preservation plays an important role city process and supports city-wide goals including supporting livable communities, affordable housing options, and climate change readiness. At the Office of Historic Preservation (OHP), we take an innovative approach to our preservation program and look for new partnerships and strategies that advance our goals of cultural, economic, and environmental sustainability. We continuously re-imagine operational processes and policies to ensure that our program is effective, efficient, and representative of the community.
Follow this page for updates regarding current projects & initiatives by OHP.
In 2019, OHP commissioned a study to better understand the contribution of existing, older housing stock plays toward affordable housing in San Antonio. Prepared by PlaceEconomics, the study examines the preservation of "old houses" as a strategy for stabilizing long-term homeownership rates, increasing the availability of affordable rental units, and preventing displacement in inner-city neighborhoods. Read more about Affordable Housing
Preservationists have been engaging with sustainable practices including adaptive reuse, material conservation, and traditional crafts and trades for decades. The built environment of San Antonio bears the mark of centuries of hazard events including flash flooding, droughts, and violent storms. With this knowledge of past climate adaptations, OHP is addressing the challenges of climate change as it impacts the cultural heritage of San Antonio. Read more about Climate Heritage
DECONSTRUCTION & SALVAGE
OHP staff has worked with stakeholders and the public to draft a potential deconstruction ordinance that would apply to older buildings approved for demolition. Deconstruction is a more sustainable approach to building removal than demolition, and the repurposing of high-quality and valuable historic materials contributes to the local economy. Read more about Deconstruction & Salvage
OHP is guided by the City’s Unified Development Code. The UDC informs the processes related to design review, district and landmark creation, demolition review, enforcement, and the composition and function of the Historic and Design Review Commission. In June 2019, a working task force was convened to assist OHP with the development and recommendation of amendments for the 2020 update cycle. Read more about UDC Updates
Westside Cultural Resource Survey Initiative
This is an ongoing initiative to identify, document, and protect places of cultural, historical, and architectural significance on San Antonio’s Westside.
Read more about Westside Cultural Resource Survey Initiative
In early 2019, OHP launched a series of discussions regarding potential zoning overlays for the Woodlawn Lake area. This initiative stems from the 2017 CCR from District 7 Councilwoman Ana Sandoval to explore viewshed protections for Woodlawn Lake. Following a year of input from the public and analysis through a technical advisory committee, it was recommended to Council that a viewshed may not be the most effective tool for the Woodlawn Lake area and that a zoning buffer, similar to the River Improvement Overlay Districts, should be explored. Read more about Woodlawn Lake