The Ripon Common Council offered its implicit blessing Tuesday night to put to rest efforts to create local historic districts in two residential neighborhoods, known as the Ransom and Tygert street neighborhoods.

   The local historic districts were created years ago, but terminated when city officials realized properties in them were not registered with the county’s register of deeds. As such, the city’s Historic Preservation Commission has sought to restore all four local historic districts over the last few years.

   One was recreated — the downtown historic district — while another was dropped after Ripon College and two neighbors objected to creating one that included their properties.

   That led to a public hearing last month regarding the Tygert and Ransom street districts, at which most who spoke asked for the city not to recreate the neighborhood districts.

   As such, the Historic Preservation Commission voted 3-1 last week to send out a letter, penned by commission chairman Ald. Aaron Becker, to affected property owners that spelled out why the city would not pursue the districts.

   It also explained alternatives for homeowners who still wish to locally register their own properties as being historic.

   That decision set up Tuesday’s discussion at the Common Council level to determine whether aldermen would give their blessing for the commission to send out the letter.

   Before the council ultimately voted 7-1 to allow that letter to be sent — the council’s indirect admission that the city would not pursue, at least right now, recreation of those local districts — most of the 12 minutes of discussion centered on the two aldermen who also are members of the commission.

Read the full story in the Aug. 15, 2019 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.