October 27, 2022

Virginia Beach Historic Preservation Commission to Host Public Meeting Nov. 9

The Virginia Beach Historic Preservation Commission will host a public meeting starting at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, in the auditorium of the Meyera E. Oberndorf Central Library, 4100 Virginia Beach Blvd. This will be the commission's first opportunity to update the public on its preservation activities since 2019. The pandemic may have disrupted normal business and routines, but the commission and City staff continued to move forward with their program of identification and recognition of Virginia Beach's historic resources.

A highlight of the meeting will be presentations on recently completed projects. Architectural historians Debra McClane and Kristin Kirchen will discuss the Multiple Property Document (MPD) that has been prepared for Virginia Beach Oceanfront Motels and Hotels (1955 – 1970) and the three 1960s hotel properties that have been nominated for listing in the National Register of Historic Places under the MPD.

"These mid-century motels are fantastic representatives of that era in Virginia Beach's tourism history," said Historic Preservation Commission Chair Jimmy Wood. "The commission hopes that National Register recognition can generate motivation to preserve them in the future."

Ms. McClane and local historian Edna Hawkins-Hendrix will provide an overview of their work on the L & J Gardens Neighborhood Historic District National Register of Historic Places nomination. L & J Gardens was listed in the National Register on Aug. 30, 2022. It is significant for its association with African American history and civil rights. Attorneys Victor J. Ashe and J. Hugo Madison lived in L & J Gardens and provided legal representation for many of the litigants that brought suits in Norfolk and Virginia Beach for school desegregation and public accommodation. L & J Gardens residents also included John Perry, the first African American elected to Virginia Beach City Council (1986), and Dr. Roy Woods, the first Black member of the Virginia Beach School Board (1966).

The Virginia Beach Historic Preservation Commission is a City Council-appointed body that advises Council on issues related to historic resources. They seek to preserve, protect and maintain the historic integrity of Virginia Beach and the former Princess Anne County through a program of advocacy and increased public awareness and involvement. The commission actively supports projects to survey historic resources, recognize historic buildings, districts, and events, and research hidden areas of the city's history. It generally meets the first Wednesday evening of the month at 2875 Sabre St., Suite 500. Visit www.VBgov.com/historicpreservation for additional information about the Historic Preservation Commission.

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