About Us: Mission and History of LHP
Caring for architecture, nature, and culture
The Lowell Heritage Partnership (LHP) preserves and enhances Lowell’s natural and built environments and cultural heritage. The LHP is a forum for discussion, an advocate for quality of life issues, a vehicle for collaboration, and a source of both financial support and technical expertise. The LHP serves as the “friends of the park” group for Lowell National Historical Park.
The Lowell Heritage Partnership (LHP) is a coalition formed in 2000 to preserve and enhance Lowell's natural, built, and cultural heritage through community partnership. The LHP evolved from a discussion among activists at the historic Spalding House and was further developed in a public forum at Middlesex Community College. Recognizing the need for stronger support for quality-of-life issues rooted in Lowell's distinctive character and resources, leaders from several organizations and agencies pledged to collaborate in pursuit of common objectives.
The LHP founders believe that the protection, preservation, and enhancement of Lowell's historic, natural, and cultural resources have been and will continue to be the foundation for Lowell's successful economic revitalization. Lowell's unique history, extraordinary waterways and landscape, significant architecture, and multicultural population make the city a precious national and world-class location.
In 2000, the LHP and City co-sponsored a celebration recognizing Lowell's selection as one of twelve Distinctive Destinations in America by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. With a T. E. Parker Foundation grant, the LHP studied the state of urban design, preservation, environmental protection, and cultural heritage activities in the neighborhoods. A guide to “Special Places” in the neighborhoods was published in 2003. The LHP co-sponsors the Doors Open Lowell program. The LHP organized an event marking Lowell’s prestigious National Honor Award from the National Trust, and gave awards to key partners in the city’s preservation-based revitalization over 25 years. The LHP sponsors an endowment at the Greater Lowell Community Foundation to maintain the Canalway, Riverwalk and Concord River Greenway.
In 2005, the LHP hosted a workshop to encourage wise reuse of buildings closed by the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston and helped lead a successful citywide effort to extend preservation protection to neighborhood districts on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2009, the LHP installed a historic Lowell bell at the junction of Central, Prescott, and Market streets, and in 2010 collaborated with the City of Lowell to restore the Abraham Lincoln monument (1909) in the Highlands neighborhood.
In 2012, Lowell Heritage Partnership embarked on a multi-year community engagement project in collaboration with Lowell National Historical Park to help inform and create the park's next generation of cultural programming. Also in 2012, the LHP co-sponsored an event celebrating the life of Lowell educator and community leader, Peter S. Stamas.
2013 saw the LHP continue to expand its reach with the launch of the "Roots, Realities and Dreams: Community Video Contest." This interactive project, along with the LHP's new forays into social media are part of an ongoing effort to engage the Lowell community in a celebration of its unique heritage. The LHP also hosted a community panel on the city's uniquely innovative spirit entitled Lowell: The Entrepreneurial City.
The Lowell Heritage Partnership celebrated its 15th anniversary in 2015 with the commission of a retrospective report, The Power of Preservation, looking back at a decade and a half of caring for Lowell's architecture, nature, and culture.