According to local architect Heidi Slaybaugh, historic buildings are the fabric of Bend. Learn more about the historic homes of Bend at the Downtown Bend Library on May 21 at 6pm as part of the Know Home series. The presentation is free and open to the public.
Slaybaugh,with over 14 years of architectural experience and the current Chair of the Bend Landmarks Commission, says that what sets Bend’s historic homes apart from other historic homes in Oregonis how closely related to the lumber mills they were. “Our city’s development boomed following the completion of the Oregon Trunk Railroad in 1911 bringing with it beginning the timber industry.” Many of Bend’s historic homes were either built by the lumber companies or the mill workers themselves, likely with scrap wood from the mills, says Slaybaugh.
Slaybaugh says that at the turn of the century when the majority of Bend’s central neighborhoods were built, the Craftsman Bungalow was the most popular residential style. “Craftsman Bungalows were modest, inexpensive, easyto build and the materials were all locally available.” This style was common in locations such as Bend that “boomed” very quickly as the bungalows included elements of mass production, like windows, doors and some built-in furnishings.
Proper care and maintenance of historic homes is invaluable, states Slaybaugh. “These buildings are the fabric of Bend and are reminders of the past.” Preserving, restoring and even remodeling existing buildings is also an incredibly sustainable act, says Slaybaugh. “It just doesn’t get any greener than reusing an entire existing building!”
Typical historic buildings were built to last, she says. “With proper maintenance, even doing some repairs along the way and energy efficiency upgrades, these buildings will still use less energy over their life span than knocking them down, and building new.
Heidi Slaybaugh is a Project Architect with BBT Architects. With over 14 years of architectural experience, Heidi earned her Master of Architecture from the University of Oregon, with a separate degree in Historic Preservation. She serves as the Chair of the Bend Landmarks Commission and previously served as the Chair of the Deschutes County Historical Landmarks Commission.