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Peacock Lane Historic District
Proposed Peacock Lane Historic District, Portland, Multnomah County

This page describes what a historic district is, the listing process, and the benefits and responsibilities of owning a listed property. Use the links below to navigate to specific information.

What is the National Register of Historic Places and a Historic District?

The National Register of Historic Places is the nation’s official list of buildings, districts, structures, sites, and objects important to local, state, or national history. The program is run by the National Park Service in Washington DC, and administered locally by the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office (SPHO), an office of the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department.
A historic district is an area or neighborhood that has a concentration of buildings and associated landscape and streetscape features that are at least 50 years old or older. To be eligible for listing in the Register, the majority of the buildings in the district must maintain their historic appearance, or be “contributing,” and the district must be associated with an important aspect of the area’s history and/or be notable for its architecture or design.

What is the Peacock Lane Historic District?

The Peacock Lane Neighborhood Association initiated the Peacock Lane Historic District proposal. Consultants Timothy Askin and Tanya March undertook a historic survey of the neighborhood in July 2016, which is required as part of the nomination process. In January 2017 another consultant, Ernestina Fuenmayor, began meeting with the neighborhood and writing the National Register nomination.
The proposed Peacock Lane Historic District is a residential neighborhood composed primarily of single-family, detached homes located in Portland, Multnomah County. It is within the limits of the Ex-Mayor Simon’s Addition, and generally bounded on the north by SE Stark Street; on the east by the west property line for the Laurel Park Apartments; on the south by SE Belmont Street; and on the west by the rear property line of the residences on the west side of Peacock Lane. One property in the proposed district faces SE Stark Street and one faces SE Belmont Street. 
The Peacock Lane Historic District is considered significant for its relationship to community planning and development as an excellent and unique example of a planned community and early automobile suburb designed by a single developer, Richard F. Wassell. It was designed in the early 1920s using the English Cottage and Tudor Revival styles as a common architectural theme to create a village-like setting. The design of each house on the street is unique and was also unusual at the time for incorporating a garage.  Most of the houses in the Peacock Lane Historic District were also designed by Richard Wassell.
The architecture of the district is cohesive without being repetitive, an uncommon trend in the 1920s. The period of significance begins in 1923 with the erection of the first building, and continues to 1930 with the construction of the last building.

A full copy of the draft nomination is below.

The nomination is submitted as an addendum to an existing document called a Multiple Property Document, or MPD, entitled “Historic Residential Suburbs in the United States, 1830-1960,” which describes the history and important trends in suburban residential development in the United States from the nineteenth century through the post-World War II era. This historic context document describes trends in community planning and development that can be seen throughout the country, placing Peacock Lane’s history and design in a larger context, and serves as an additional reference for the Peacock Lane Historic District nomination.

The documents can be downloaded by clicking on the following links:

View map of the proposed Peacock Lane Historic District [pdf]

View the National Register nomination [pdf]

View the Multiple Property Document (MPD) [pdf]

How does the National Register nomination process work?

Any person or organization can nominate a property or district for listing in the National Register of Historic Places by submitting a nomination to the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office. A complete nomination for a historic district includes the nomination form, property list, maps, photos, and exhibits. Once received, SHPO staff reviews the document for completeness, and then provides the preparer with a memo, if needed, outlining required changes to meet the minimum standards set by the National Park Service and making suggestions to improve the document.
Nominations that meet the minimum standards are forwarded to the State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation (SACHP), a nine member, governor-appointed body of citizens with expertise in fields relating to historic preservation. The nomination document is also provided to the City of Portland for comment. The City will hold a separate public hearing on the nomination.
At its meeting, the SACHP considers comments by local officials, staff, and interested citizens and recommends to the SHPO and the National Park Service to accept or reject a property or district for listing in the National Register, or defer the nomination for future consideration. Only the National Park Service can list a property in the Register. A draft agenda is posted below.
A project timeline is below. As part of the process, local officials and the general public are invited to participate.

Project Timeline and Important Dates

May 16, 2016 – SHPO attended a meeting with the Peacock Lane neighborhood
July 2016 – Survey of neighborhood undertaken by consultants
March 2017 – SHPO received draft Peacock Lane Historic District nomination
April 21, 2017 – Letters noticing upcoming public hearing mailed to property owners
April 28, 2017 – Website for Peacock Lane Historic District posted at: http://www.oregon.gov/oprd/HCD/NATREG/Pages/index.aspx
June 16, 2017 – Peacock Lane nomination scheduled to be heard by the State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation
September 12, 2017 – Peacock Lane nomination mailed to the National Park Service

What does listing in the National Register mean?

The SHPO and the federal government do not regulate private property unless the owner chooses to take advantage of federal and state tax incentives or grants. Local county and city governments, however, are required by state law to protect properties listed in the National Register. Because local laws vary from place to place, property owners or those looking to purchase properties listed in the National Register should contact Brandon Spencer-Hartle at the Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability Services at (503) 823-4641, brandon.spencer@portlandoregon.gov, for more information.
View the SHPO National Register webpage the outlines Benefits and Responsibilities for listed properties, the National Register process, and how to list a property here:
View information on Oregon grants that are available to owners of National Register properties and other cultural resources and institutions here: 
View information on SHPO tax incentives programs available to owners of National Register properties here:


How do I object or support listing in the National Register?

Owners of private property may object to listing their property in the National Register by submitting a notarized statement to the SHPO certifying that the individual is the sole or partial owner of the property and that they object to the listing. The proposed district will not be listed if a majority of the property owners object. Supporters do not need to submit a notarized statement.
Each owner of private property in a district has one “vote” regardless of how many properties or what part of the one property that individual owns, and regardless of whether the property contributes to the significance of the proposed district. An owner is defined as an entity (individual, partnership, corporation) holding fee simple title to property. Divisions of government, including schools and fire districts, may not object to listing. Properties owned by a trust or trustee are only allowed a single vote, whether or not there are multiple owners/trustees for the property. More information on this topic can be found here:

How to count owners in historic districts [pdf]
The right to object is described more fully in the federal regulations governing the National Register program, 36 CFR 60.6.  A link to these regulations may be found at:
Please use the objection and support forms provided below. Additional written comments are welcome.
No Objections as of June 23, 2017
Letters of support may be submitted by email or regular mail. Original signed and notarized objections must be mailed to:
State Historic Preservation Office
ATTN: Tracy Zeller
725 Summer Street NE, Suite C
Salem, OR 97301
Letters of Support may be emailed to Tracy Zeller at Tracy.Zeller@oregon.gov

Questions about the information on this page?

Jason Allen, Preservation Specialist
Oregon State Historic Preservation Office
Phone: 503-986-0579
Email: Jason.Allen@oregon.gov

Questions about City of Portland's land-use regulations and the local listing process?

Brandon Spencer-Hartle, City Planner

Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability Services
Phone: 503-823-4641
Email: Brandon.Spencer@portlandoregon.gov