Va. Beach designates first historic neighborhood

Virginia Beach has designated Oceana as the first neighborhood in the city to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

VIRGINIA BEACH - VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- The Oceana Neighborhood has reached historic status. It’s the first district or neighborhood in the city to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The neighborhood dates back to 1906. It encompasses about 70 acres along North Oceana Boulevard and Virginia Beach Boulevard and got its name because it was one of the last stops on the Oceana rail line. In fact that’s how the original homes got there.

“It was a popular way to build a house, you ordered it through a mail order catalogue and it came right on the train, all the materials numbered with instructions,” said Virginia Beach Historic Preservation Planner Mark Reed.

Reed said there are a variety of different homes in the neighborhood now, but they all embody the same warm feeling.

“It just has a great character it maintains its integrity,” said Reed. “The large tree lined streets.”

David Morris has lived in Oceana since 1975. He said it’s an honor to be the first neighborhood in the city recognized on the National Register of Historic Places.

“I think it’s kind of a neighborhood that’s kind of been neglected in a way,” said Morris.

This historic designation allows home owners to improve houses as they see fit while at the same time highlighting its past legacy.

“They could go ahead and build additions they could potentially demolish a property if that’s what they want to do tomorrow”

Sam Reid’s Oceana home was built in 1915. He’s glad it will be forever cemented in the record books.

“For us it’s a proud moment,” said Reid. “The neighborhood is going to be established and it has a future” said Reid.

Virginia Beach said they hope to designate more neighborhoods as historic districts in the near future.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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