Historic Preservation

Posted February 11, 2019
  • Collapsed ruins of the Punta Borinquen Lighthouse in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico in November of 2017.

    Photo by Héctor J. Berdecía-Hernández.

  • Vernacular Puerto Rican house in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico in November of 2017.

    Photo by Héctor J. Berdecía-Hernández.

  • Built in 1898, Casa Vigil is the only standing vernacular house from the late 19th century in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico in November of 2017.

    Photo by Héctor J. Berdecía-Hernández.

  • Clockwise from left: Architecture students Camila Hernandez, Sairimar Gomez, Reily Calderon, and Hector Berdecia; conservation architect Diana Luna-Serbia; and Para la Naturaleza heritage coordinator Ivonne Sanabria.

    Photo by Para la Naturaleza.

A Map of History: Surveying Puerto Rico’s Historic Places after Hurricane Maria

After the devastation of Hurricane Maria through Puerto Rico, Héctor J. Berdecía-Hernández (MSHP-'20) along with a group of students from Puerto Rico, conducted an island-wide survey of historic properties, sharing the results with the state historic preservation office (SHPO) and the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture. Over 5,000 structures and historic site around the islands were surveyed. Recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, among other national and local organizations, ‘Map of History’ provides a template for conducting a comprehensive survey of post-disaster conditions in a relatively short amount of time. The local chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) recognized as much, awarding the project’s participants an Honor Award in Research and Publications in 2018.

Read the full article on savingplaces.org, the website for The National Trust for Historic Preservation, Preservation Leadership Forum.