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Protecting Pensacola’s Historically Significant Structures

by Jeremy Morrison

With a piece of Pensacola’s past slated for demolition, the Pensacola City Council is poised to embark on a discussion about how the erasing of such historic structures might be avoided in the future.
“I think the John Sunday house was the springboard for me to launch this,” said Councilman Brian Spencer, who’s bringing the topic before council Thursday night.

The John Sunday house, a historically significant structure in downtown Pensacola, is slated for demolition.

Spencer said a major impetus for the discussion is the planned clearing of the former home of John Sunday, an historically and culturally significant local figure, to make way for townhomes. The councilman would like to see measures put in place that could help avoid such an event in the future, beginning with an assessment of the area’s “historic” structures.
“I hope that it will initiate an updated city-wide survey of historic structures including those that are not in currently designated historic districts,” Spencer said of Thursday’s planned council discussion.
The councilman said that the survey — which he estimated would cost $9,500, as per a quote from the University of West Florida Historic Trust’s historic preservationist — would ideally categorize a structure as historic not solely based on its age alone but also take into account “other significant, associated events with a location or structure.”
“Cultural significance,” Spencer explained.
The Pensacola City Council meets Thursday, 5:30 p.m. at Pensacola City Hall.

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