Echo Street Project Melds Historic Preservation, Neighborhood Revitalization and Affordable Housing
04/07/2011

Fresno, CA – The City of Fresno and Marko Construction Group invite the public and the press to the dedication of the newly-restored John B. Marshall Homes, two working-class cottages in the Lowell neighborhood.

The event will be held at 164 and 166 North Echo Avenue on Monday, May 2, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Fresno-based Marko Construction Group relocated and rehabilitated the two cottages built around 1886 and 1908 as part of the City’s effort to create affordable housing and revitalize this older neighborhood. Preservation architect Chris Johnson AIA prepared the plans to ensure that these cottages, among the oldest in the City, were restored authentically and yet upgraded with new foundations, electrical, and plumbing.

Funding for this rehabilitation project was provided in part with U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, HOME Investment Partnerships Program funds.

The homes were designated by the City Council to Fresno’s Local Register of Historic Resources in October 2009. In 2010, the project was awarded a Mayoral Preservation Award.

“The relocation and rehabilitation of two historic working-class cottages are part of a larger effort by the city to create affordable housing, rehabilitate existing housing and revitalize the Lowell neighborhood,” said Craig Scharton, director of the Downtown and Community Revitalization Department. “We commend the Marko Construction Group for taking on this challenging historic preservation project and again congratulate them for receiving the Mayor’s prestigious Historic Preservation Award.”

Councilmember Oliver L. Baines III added, “The preservation of these historical cottages allows our community an outstanding view of our past while providing quality housing for today. I want to thank Marko Construction Group as well as Chris Johnson for their award-winning work.”

“It was with great pride that we accepted the job of restoring these two beautiful cottages. The project provided us an opportunity to give back to our community and save an important piece of Fresno’s history,” said Paul Gong, owner of MARKO Construction Group, Inc.

“This project is such a win-win for the community and the neighborhood,” said Karana Hattersley-Drayton, the City’s Historic Preservation Project Manager. “Recycling historic building stock not only preserves a piece of history but is also very, very ‘green.’”

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