The Preservation and Conservation Association of Champaign County (PACA), established in 1981, is a non-profit, 501(c)3 organization created to foster and encourage the preservation and conservation of the natural and built environment of Champaign County and East Central Illinois. As a not-for-profit group, PACA is membership-based and volunteer driven. Support is provided by membership dues, contributions, grants, the architectural salvage warehouse, and fund raising activities. Activities sponsored by PACA include house and walking tours, workshops and seminars, educational programs and bimonthly newsletters, an annual awards program and an annual grant program. PACA also operates a popular architectural salvage warehouse at 44 E. Washington Street, Champaign, IL.
In furthering such purposes, PACA shall: research and document properties; acquire and disseminate information; study, propose, and support relevant legislation and public planning; raise funds for the acquisition and ownership of real and personal property, and for PACA’s operation; provide support through technical assistance to others; build coalitions with other preservation and conservation groups; provide educational services and benefits to the public; engage in litigation on behalf of its members; and, conduct other activities authorized by PACA (source: Constitution, Preservation and Conservation Association of Champaign County).
The Preservation Association works to heighten public awareness of the importance of Champaign County’s history and to strengthen the continuity between generations. Bricks and boards of old buildings are a tangible expression of the dreams and lives of people long dead, an entryway into the community’s collective memory. PACA is dedicated to saving the buildings where this memory resides. Our cultural heritage, which is represented in buildings, structures, and sites, can make a significant contribution to present day society. As the name implies, historic preservation seeks to identify and preserve these landmarks and districts for our use, education, observation, and pleasure.
Historic preservation is present on national, state, and local levels. Preservation of our local resources provides important cultural, educational, psychological and economic assets for our county. Preservation of our local historic resources creates a sense of civic pride in which all of us can share.