On behalf of HUD and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Alphonso Jackson presented the 2005 Secretary's Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation to the Umpqua Community Development Corporation (CDC) in Roseburg, Oregon. The award recognizes projects and activities that advance the goals of historic preservation while providing affordable housing and expanded economic opportunities, particularly for low- and moderate-income people. The Umqua CDC is the eighth recipient of the award.
The 2005 award honors Umpqua CDC for its sustained achievements in restoring historic structures in rural towns in Oregon for use as housing and commercial space for low- and moderate-income families and individuals.
The Umpqua CDC is highly regarded in its community for tackling and completing difficult adaptive re-use projects; it received national recognition last year in the form of the Stand Up for Rural America award. Umpqua CDC’s recent efforts have included rescuing two vacant mid-sized buildings in southern Oregon communities, converting the one, the Grand Hotel, into low- and moderate-income housing and the other, the Washington School, into a municipal and community center.
Both efforts have helped revitalize rural downtowns. The Grand Hotel, built in 1910 in the center of the business district of Roseburg, is now called the Grand Apartments and consists of 37 residential units affordable to low- and moderate-income households. The five commercial units on the ground floor provide employment opportunities for residents and the community
The Washington School Renovation project restored an historic landmark, also built in 1910, which had been sitting vacant for more than 25 years. The former Washington School now enhances the town of Oakland and houses social and civic activities. The cost of its restoration was half that of new construction. Both rehabilitation efforts utilized state CDBG funds.