Gold Coast Historic District
In 1943 the Manhattan District of the U.S. Corps of Engineers selected Richland as the site of the World War II plutonium production plant. When designing the town, Architect Albin Pherson designated housing plans with a letter of the alphabet. These "alphabet homes," which were originally named for ease in identification, have become a staple of the City of Richland's (City) history.
After initial interest from Richland residents, the City began the process of surveying and categorizing more than 5,000 alphabet and prefab homes. In the spring of 2003, the city met to discuss the process of forming a historic district (without restrictions on property modifications) to be listed on the National Register. Reasons for forming a historic district are:
- Historic preservation
- Homeowner pride
- Neighborhood recognition
Becoming a Historic District
In December 2003, the City submitted a National Register of Historic Places Registration to the State Historic Preservation office. On January 23, 2004, the City of Richland was awarded the following by the Governor's Advisory Council on Historic Preservation:
- Recommend to the state historic preservation officer that the Gold Coast Historic District be placed on the Washington Heritage Register at the national level of significance.
- Recommend to the state historic preservation officer that the nomination of the Gold Coast Historic District be forwarded to the keeper of the National Register for listing at the national level of significance.