Hay Barn receives preservation design award

Photo of Cowell Ranch Hay Barn
Photo of Cowell Ranch Hay Barn

The Cowell Lime Works Hay Barn has won a 2017 Preservation Design Award from the California Preservation Foundation. The award was presented during the foundation's 34th annual gala award ceremony on Oct. 13 in San Francisco.

The 150-year-old Cowell Ranch Hay Barn near the entrance of campus, a key building in the Cowell Lime Works Historic District, was made possible with a $5 million grant from the Helen and Will Webster Foundation. Dozens of community volunteers, including members of the Santa Cruz Construction Guild, participated in a one-day "barn raising" in March 2015 that kicked off the restoration. Period construction techniques—including mortise and tenon joinery—were used to tie together the superstructure, which was made up of new timbers as well as timber salvaged from the original barn.

Countless individuals participated over the coming months, before the completion of the restoration was celebrated Sept. 12, 2015. Today, the barn serves as the headquarters of the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems.

The foundation provides statewide leadership, advocacy, and education to ensure the protection of California's diverse cultural heritage and historic places. The design awards recognize exemplary work in historic preservation, restoration, rehabilitation, sustainability, and other aspects of preservation.