“I was trained as both an architect and architectural historian,” Merlino says, “and have always been drawn to older buildings and the layered narrative of history they embody.” Her book, “Building Reuse: Sustainability, Preservation, and the Value of Design” was published this year by UW Press.
Greenville, South Carolina, one of the roughly two dozen communities highlighted in Our Towns. Shutterstock
Many cities are taking advantage of their 19th-century building stock, investing in historic preservation and adaptive reuse. They’re also adding art and music spaces, showcasing how small-town urbanism is alive and well.