New Round of Grants to Help Restore Local Courthouses

The Texas Historical Commission (THC) will open applications for the Round XII grant cycle of its award-winning Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program (THCPP) this fall. 

In order to be eligible to apply for a grant in Round XII, counties must have a preservation master plan approved by THCPP staff prior to April 18, 2022. To find out if your county has an approved preservation master plan or for an outline of the content requirements, please contact THCPP staff using the information below.  

"We are delighted to offer funds again that preserve useful, safe, and efficient buildings for county government that support travel and tourism jobs," said THC Executive Director, Mark Wolfe. "Restoring these buildings and expanding the economic potential ensures that future generations will learn from these communities’ histories and legacies." 

The THCPP provides partial matching grants for the restoration of historic county courthouses. While restoring the courthouse’s original architectural integrity is an important goal of the program, modernization to improve accessibility, fire safety, energy efficiency, security, mechanical, communication, and electrical, and plumbing systems is an important program goal that is critical to the building’s continued performance as a courthouse. 

The program awards three types of grants: planning grants for the production of architectural plans and specifications; construction grants for restorations and rehabilitations; and emergency grants to address critical issues endangering a historic courthouse or its occupants, including damage caused by natural disasters. The program received a $25 million appropriation from the 87th Texas Legislature for the 2021–22 biennium. 

The THCPP Round XII timeline for submitting applications, construction plans, and new preservation master plans is available on the THC’s website at thc.texas.gov/thcpp, and a digital copy of the grant application materials will be available on November 5, 2021. Completed grant application materials are due by 5:00 PM on Friday, May 13, 2022. The THC will announce grant recipients and awards at its Quarterly Meeting in July 2022. 

The THC provides ongoing support and training to county staff for maintenance and upkeep of their restored courthouses through the Texas Courthouse Stewardship Program. For more information about the THCPP, contact the THC’s Architecture Division at 512-463-6094.

Since its creation in 1999, the THCPP has worked with more than 136 counties and awarded nearly $320 million to fully restore 74 courthouses and provide smaller grants to assist with emergency and planning projects. Courthouse preservation projects have created more than 11,800 jobs in Texas, generated more than $794 million in state economic impact, and returned about $47 million to Texas state and local governments through tax revenue. Restored courthouses reinvigorate historic downtowns and promote heritage tourism, a $7.3 billion industry in Texas. 

 

8/6/21