Council places 11 properties on historic place register

The Cortez City Council Tuesday night approved adding 11 properties within the Original Townsite of Cortez to the City’s Register of Historic Structures, Sites and Districts.

In 2011, the city used two certified local government grants from the Colorado Historical Society to fund the inventory of properties on Montezuma Avenue from Linden Street to the half block between Ash and Washington streets.

The 2012 survey included inventories of 41 properties, and eight of those met the criteria to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and 34 were eligible for the city’s register.

All of the property owners eligible for the city’s register were notified of the results of the survey and 12 responded,11 by the deadline.

City Planning Director Kirsten Sackett addressed 11 of the properties to the council with a public hearing on each one of them and the understanding that more properties could be addressed with council at a later date.

To be listed on the city register, the properties must be at least 50 years old and must meet at least one criteria for architectural, cultural or geographical environmental significance.

Sackett said a future goal would be for the city of Cortez to have enough properties to be designated historical to be able to apply for a local district.

The fees for the 11 properties to be placed on the city’s register were also waived.

Linda Towle, board president of the Cortez Historical Society, spoke out in support of all properties during the public hearing, saying it was nice to know owners of 40 percent of the properties surveyed wanted to be placed on the register.

The Cortez Historical Society has applied for a grant, and Towle said if it is successful, a public hearing could be called to discuss and decide whether to pursue a national register district.

michaelm@cortezjournal.com