The city of Cripple Creek is considered a significant historic landmark within the borders of Teller County and has been designated as both a National Historic District and a National Historic Landmark.
Each year, the city offers three grants from its Historic Preservation Department to address the needs of historic residential, commercial and public structures. The purpose is to promote the educational, cultural, economic and general welfare of the city as a whole.
According to Historic Preservation and Planning Coordinator Kathy Stockton, last year’s beneficiaries included a small historic home located at 404 S. First St. that was in a “threatened” condition before receiving grants in 2012 and 2013 which replaced the roof, chimney, foundation, siding and provided new, historically correct exterior paint.
The project which was undertaken by owners, Mark and Kathy Fleming, was a combination of city grant funds and owner’s funds
In the commercial category, the General Store located at 246 E. Bennett Ave. was the recipient of a new roof using 50 percent city grant funds and 50 percent owner matching funds. The new roof solved a problem with ice build-up in the alley behind the store and will keep the historic structure waterproof for many years.
As last year’s Public/Non-Profit recipient, St. Peter’s Chapel, 318 N. Third St., was able to restore the windows on the front façade and the bell tower, completing the restoration of the historic stained glass windows, a multi-year HP grant project. One hundred percent of city funds were used on this showcase of 19th century historic church architecture.
In recognition of Cripple Creek’s unique historic significance, the city passed an ordinance in 1991 establishing its support of historic preservation practices for the “protection, enhancement, perpetuation and use of structures located within the city limits which reflect elements of the city’s archaeological, historical, cultural and architectural heritage.”
During this process, the city’s Historic Preservation Department was created to establish “reasonable rules, regulations and guidelines for the enhancement, protection and preservation of the Historic District sites, structures, objects and areas of historical, cultural, geographical or geological significance located with the city.”
The intent is to “improve, maintain and promote the Cripple Creek community through the preservation and protection of the city's historic built environment and its National Historic Landmark status.” A seven-member commission makes grant decisions based on applicant's meeting the criteria as defined each year.
Applications are available at the Cripple Creek City Hall, 337 E. Bennett Ave., for requests for city historic grant funds to help with restoration of residential, commercial and public/nonprofit historic structures located in the City of Cripple Creek and constructed within a specific historic period of significance. Criteria and grant amounts for the three grant categories are are as follows: Residential — $40,000. Structures must have been constructed prior to or in the year of 1920; Commercial — $40,000. Structures must have been constructed between 1896–1910; and Public/Non-Profit — $5,000. Structures must have been constructed between 1896–1910.
Applications for all categories must be submitted between now and Mar. 31. It is recommended that applicants meet with the Historic Preservation Department to discuss their plans prior to submittal of the application. Call 689-3905 to schedule an appointment. For additional grant criteria and information, contact Kathy Stockton in the Historic Preservation Department at (719) 689-3905.