Main Building at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio to Receive Preservation Honor Award

Washington, D.C. (October 24, 2012) –The National Trust for Historic Preservation will present its Preservation Honor Award for the restoration of the Main Building at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio.  The project is one of 22 award winners to be honored by the National Trust during its 2012 National Preservation Conference next week in Spokane, Wash.

When the Sisters of the Congregation of Divine Providence received land to create Our Lady of the Lake University in the 19th century, its founders envisioned fulfilling their mission to educate the poor in “a beautiful Gothic chapel with twin spires pointing up to the blue Texas sky.” But in 2008, when a four alarm fire devastated the University’s historic Main Building, that vision appeared to have gone up in flames. 

However, the school’s community, which boasts one of the nation’s highest percentages of Hispanic students, gathered the very next day to launch its REBUILD, RESTORE, and RENEW program. Their assignment: not only reconstruct the San Antonio landmark, but also redefine the Main Building as a center of campus and community life.

Preservation efforts included interior and exterior restoration. The building reopened in 2011, and the Main Building’s iconic twin spires are once again a symbol of pride and hope for students and the surrounding community.

“While each is unique, this year’s outstanding Honor Award winners all reflect the importance of protecting what is special and irreplaceable,” said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  “Whether it’s the restoration of an iconic post office in Philadelphia or the transformation of a Greyhound bus station into a Civil Rights museum in Montgomery, this year’s Honor Award winners demonstrate how saving places is bolstering local economies and creating jobs in communities across the country.” 

The award will be presented to Our Lady of the Lake University at the National Preservation Awards ceremony in Spokane, Wash., on Friday, November 2.

Co-recipient is: Kell Munoz Architects.

The National Preservation Awards are bestowed on distinguished individuals, nonprofit organizations, public agencies and corporations whose skill and determination have given new meaning to their communities through preservation of our architectural and cultural heritage. These efforts include citizen attempts to save and maintain important landmarks; companies and craftsmen whose work restores the richness of the past; the vision of public officials who support preservation projects and legislation in their communities; and educators and journalists who help Americans understand the value of preservation. The winners of the National Preservation Awards will appear online at www.PreservationNation.org/awards.

The 2012 National Preservation Award Winners:

Louise du Pont Crowninshield Award: Donovan Rypkema, Washington, D.C.

National Trust/Advisory Council on Historic Preservation Award for Federal Partnerships in Historic Preservation: Montgomery Greyhound Bus Station--Freedom Rides Museum, Montgomery, Ala.

The American Express Aspire Award: Recognizing Emerging Leaders in Preservation: M. Rosalind Sagara, Riverside, Calif.   

Peter H. Brink Award for Individual Achievement in Historic Preservation: Enid Pinkney, Coral Gables, Fl.

National Trust/HUD Secretary’s Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation: Saint Luke’s Manor, Cleveland.

Trustees’ Award for Organizational Excellence: The Preservation Alliance of Minnesota, Saint Paul, Minn.  

John H. Chafee Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement in Public Policy: John Andrew Gallery, Philadelphia.

Trustees Emeritus Award for Excellence in the Stewardship of Historic Sites: The Jane Addams Hull House, Chicago.

THE 2012 NATIONAL PRESERVATION HONOR AWARD WINNERS:

30th Street Main Post Office, Philadelphia.

ASM International Headquarters, Materials Park, Ohio.

Charles H. Shaw Technology and Learning Center, Chicago.

Leavenworth Building 19, Leavenworth, Kan.

Gullah Museum of Hilton Head Island’s Preservation of Duey’s Home, Hilton Head Island, S.C.

The Historic Park Inn Hotel, Mason City, Iowa.

Main Building at Our Lady of the Lake University, San Antonio.

Market Square Place, Pittsburgh.

New Orleans U.S. Custom House, New Orleans.

Oswego Iron Furnace, Lake Oswego, Ore.  

Accident Fund National Headquarters/Ottawa Street Power Station, Lansing, Mich.

SIERR Building at McKinstry Station, Spokane, Wash.

Todd Bolender Center for Dance and Creativity, Kansas City, Mo.

Washington State Heritage Barn Preservation Initiative, Wash.   

 

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places.
PreservationNation.org