Segundo Barrio closer to being established as national historic district


Photo courtesy of Restore Sacred Heart Church.

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The Segundo Barrio is one step closer to being established as a national historic district.

The historic designation could come as early as September.

Dr. Max Grossman, co-chair of the efforts to preserve the neighborhood, told KTSM 9 News via email that he received word from the Texas Historical Commission that its executive director signed off on El Paso County’s nomination of Segundo Barrio into the National Register of Historic Places.

Chris Florance, director of the Communications Division, said the nomination materials were forwarded to the National Park Service for final approval on Aug. 10, but it’s not a done deal yet.

“We submitted the application to the National Parks Service on August 10 but have not heard back from them about whether Segundo Barrio will be listed as a National Historic District,” Florance said.

The Keeper of the National Park Service has 45 calendar days to approve the nomination, meaning the final deadline is on Sept. 24, 2021.

Currently, only one building in Segundo Barrio is on the National Register of Historic Places, but the neighborhood will soon have 686 listed individually or as contributing properties.

Grossman told KTSM that hundreds of buildings within the new historic district will be eligible for state and federal tax credits for restoration and rehabilitation, which promises to improve the aesthetics and quality of life of the neighborhood.

Fr. Rafael Garcia is co-chairing with Grossman, and the two are spearheading efforts to restore Sacred Heart Church, which will be the first restoration project in the Segundo Barrio to benefit from the tax credits.

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