I notice some homes in 'historic' Avondale and Riverside have historic plaques mounted on them.

Asked by Jack Tyler, Bozeman, MT Sat Mar 19, 2011

But most homes there do not have these (nor in next door Fairfax) and almost all the homes are 'historic' in that they were built many (many!) decades ago. What is the significance of the plaque other than perhaps the home being registered with RAP? Who awards the plaques, and generally based on what criteria? What obligations does the buyer assume for such a home. What tangible benefits might apply? Many thanks!

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William True, Agent, Sarasota, FL
Sun Mar 20, 2011
There are many other areas in Florida that preserve history in a similar fashion, including Sarasota. This does not necessarily mean the home is designated in the Nation Register of Historic Places.
Web Reference:  http://truesarasota.com
1 vote
David White, Agent, Jacksonville, FL
Sat Mar 19, 2011

The signs on the homes are basically homeowners in the historic district that are members of or support Riverside Avondale preservation. It doesn't necessarily indicate the home is on the historic register. Riverside/Avondale is a national historic district (1 of only 2 in Jacksonville) and is one of the largest in the country.

If you buy a home in a national historic district there are some restrictions on what can be done to the front exterior of the home (basically what can be viewed from the street) but there are no other guidelines regarding interior renovations or paint colors. This is to protect home values and prevent someone from tearing off their front porch or installing vinyl siding for no good reason. Fairfax and Ortega are not part of the historic district and therefore you have recent teardowns of perfectly good 1920's bungalows.

This area is the most walkable and architecturally & demographically diverse neighborhood in Jacksonville with many parks, restaurants and shops within an easy stroll or bike ride. It is truly a fantastic place to live and work. I live in Riverside and my office is in Avondale and wouldn't have it any other way. If you're interested in the area, feel free to call or email.

David White
davidsellsjax@gmail.com, 904.349.5113
1 vote
Sandra Sevil…, , Jacksonville, FL
Sun Mar 20, 2011
Riverside-Avondale is a well known Historic District to the Jacksonville native. I agree with David and Bryan concerning the Riverside-Avondale Historic District. I live here for 20 years! and still loving it!
0 votes
Bryan Gates, Agent, Jacksonville, FL
Sun Mar 20, 2011

David is right, but more specifically you can buy the signs through Riverside/Avondale Preservation (RAP). It it a way of showing that we are proud of our homes and community and support this organization. I would guess that 80-90% of the homes in the district are classified as "contributing structures". There are maps available online at the RAP website which will show you the boundaries of the district. If you do buy a home in the district you are obligated to consult with the city's historic commission before you make any changes to the exterior of your home (with the exception of paint color). This process can be as simple as getting an administrative approval for adding a deck or shed to a full blown hearing if you want to do anything like window replacement or an addition. These restrictions were put into effect to protect the integrity of the neighborhood and ultimately the values of the properties. I am a little biased when it comes to my neighborhood. I have lived here for almost 13 years and remodeled several homes. In my opinion it is the best area in Jacksonville and it just keeps getting better.

You can go to my website for links to the different sites concerning RAP and the city's historic commission's guidelines. You can also call me direct if you would like to be put in contact with some of the key players in the neighborhood and decision making process or if you have interest in the the homes in the area.


Bryan Gates
Watson Realty Corp.
904 465-5846
0 votes
Myrna Gatenby, Agent, Jacksonville, FL
Sun Mar 20, 2011
I could try to answer your questions but would be sure to miss something very important. For the answers to your questions, please go to http://www.riverside-avondale.com/
0 votes
Frank & Shar…, Agent, Fleming Island, FL
Sat Mar 19, 2011
The plaque on the homes are from the Riverside-Avondale Preservation Society. It is a non-profit organization that was founded in 1974 to preserve and restore the historic neighborhoods of Riverside and Avondale. It has worked, because the Riverside-Avondale neighborhood was named one of the Top 10 Neighborhoods in America by The American Planning Association. It is the first neighborhood in Florida to win this honor. Here is the link to the organization:


You can find out lots more details about what the requirements are to have the plaque on the house, other awards for the homes in the area and much more!

Please let us know if you need any further help.

Best regards,

Sharon Alters

Frank & Sharon Alters
Web Reference:  http://teamalters.com
0 votes
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