FAQ about new Carolopolis Resilience category

preservation-admin , August 9, 2022

This year, the Preservation Society of Charleston (PSC) is pleased to announce the introduction of a new Resilience Award category to its time-honored Carolopolis Award program. 

Established to recognize exceptional efforts to sensitively adapt historic properties to changing climate conditions, the Resilience Carolopolis Award will honor projects that incorporate creative flood adaptation strategies, while adhering to best practices for historic preservation. The Post and Courier’s Robert Behre even profiled the all-new award category on July 31. 

Over the past several years, more frequent and intense flooding has had significant impacts on the Lowcountry’s historic built environment and quality of life. Due in large part to the efforts of dedicated homeowners and project teams, Charleston has emerged as a national leader in sensitively integrating resilient design within historic contexts. The PSC looks forward to showcasing exemplary climate adaptation projects, building on the purpose of the Carolopolis Award to inspire lasting stewardship of our region’s historic places.  

This FAQ is intended to guide homeowners and project teams in crafting a compelling Resilience Award nomination.  

What types of projects might be recognized under the Resilience Award category?  

  • The purpose of the Resilience Award is to recognize projects that are considered significant undertakings, incorporate flood adaptation strategies, and retain the historic character and integrity of the property.  
  • The PSC welcomes nominations that address resilience to flood risk while following federal guidelines for best practices in historic preservation, known as the Secretary of Interior’s Standards.”  
  • We recommend referring to the National Park Service’s “Guidelines on Flood Adaptation for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings” to review a range of adaptation strategies for historic buildings that are consistent with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards, such as elevation, floodproofing, temporary barriers and gates, etc.   

What is a “sensitive” adaptation? 

  • Sensitive adaptation projects are those that follow federal guidelines for best practices in historic preservation, known as the “Secretary of the Interior’s Standards,” which ensure the long-term preservation of a property’s significance through retention of historic materials and features. 

How do I determine if I should nominate my project for a Resilience Award vs. other Carolopolis Award categories? 

  • Projects nominated for recognition under the Resilience category should clearly demonstrate a response to climate risk. Because all award categories prioritize excellence in historic preservation, there may be shared qualities between projects submitted under different award categories. Ultimately, it is up to the nominator to decide how they want their effort to be recognized. Please contact PSC Staff with any questions. 

Can I nominate my project for more than one award? 

  • A project may be eligible for recognition under multiple award categories; however, all exterior work will be recognized under a single category: either Exterior, Pro Merito, or Resilience. If the scope of work includes an additional interior or new construction component, a project may also be eligible for recognition under the Interior or New Construction categories. Please review the eligibility requirements for all award categories on our website.  

Are projects outside of downtown Charleston eligible for recognition? 

  • Yes. Through the Carolopolis Award program, the PSC seeks to honor exemplary preservation projects throughout Charleston and the Lowcountry. 

Still have questions? Contact PSC Staff at We are excited to review the range of projects nominated as part of the Resilience Award category’s inaugural year! 


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