The East Durham National Register Historic District, just a few blocks east of Downtown, is an ideally located neighborhood providing an excellent mix of quality historic homes that are affordable for working families and first-time homeowners. But the neighborhood has been plagued with absentee landlords and years of disinvestment, resulting in poorly maintained and vacant buildings and wanton demolitions that have fractured the community’s cohesiveness. Existing homeowners have seen property values fall and crime rates rise.
For more than five years, Preservation North Carolina and Preservation Durham have been working with East Durham residents and community advocates.
Recently, we launched Project RED to push ahead the efforts to Revitalize East Durham. Together, we can rebuild a safe, attractive, economically sound and sustainable neighborhood that is both racially and economically diverse.
By preserving and rehabilitating the neighborhood’s wealth of early-20th-century homes, we will increase the number of owner-occupants, encourage investments in amenities and infrastructure and bring back pride in the community.
Preservation NC and Preservation Durham have committed to renovating and selling several vacant historic houses and encouraging the private construction of new houses. The houses will be affordable for service workers, public employees, and first-time homeowners.
All of the historic Project RED homes will be sold with protective covenants and eligible for historic rehabilitation tax credits as well as other financial incentives. We expect to invest more than $1.2 million to acquire and rehabilitate these historic properties.
No matter where you live, you can get involved with Project RED. If you believe that saving diverse historic communities like East Durham is important or that neighborhood revitalization makes for sustainable cities, we need your help.
All of our Project RED houses are currently sold or under contract. Click here to see them.