1. Archive

Architect Carl Feiss; led preservation drive

Carl Feiss, the visionary architect and pioneering urban planner who helped create the Federal Historic Preservation Act of 1966 and the National Register of Historic Places, has died. He was 90.

Mr. Feiss, who died Oct. 10 at a Gainesville retirement home, became in the 1930s one of the first professional planners, helping elevate urban planning to a distinct discipline. He went on to aid historic preservation in Charleston, S.C.; Savannah, Ga.; Annapolis, Md.; and Alexandria, Va.

Decades later, Mr. Feiss ended his career teaching a new generation of planners at the University of Florida.

In 1950, he went to Washington as the chief planner for what was then called slum clearance, running programs that later went on to become the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

At a time when urban renewal generally meant bulldozing neighborhoods to make way for modern structures, he decided that many of the buildings being demolished were architectural or historic gems that could be _ and should be _ restored.

In 1955, he left Washington and became an independent consultant, later going on to lead efforts to pass the Historic Preservation Act and the National Register of Historic Places.