511 a_resizeThe Alano Society club house at 511 N. Carroll St. in Madison recently completed a redesign of their facade using a grant from the city’s Facade Improvement Grant program. The house was built in 1848 for Willett and Jennie Main, and has been associated with the Alano Society of Madison, a supportive recovery community based on the Alcoholics Anonymous model, since 1948. It is one of the longest-serving houses in the nation for such a program.

The Alano Society developed a plan in 2012 to replace an ill-fitting entrance vestibule with a porch that is more in keeping with the house’s Italianate style. The Society developed a funding strategy that could, in part, leverage the house’s historic designation (it’s in the Mansion Hill Historic District).

The Society learned that Madison’s Facade Improvement Grant program was recently expanded to include commercially-zoned buildings designated individually as Madison Landmarks. The house was already zoned as commercial, so they pursued and received Landmark status. The house’s individual historic designation, combined with the commercial zoning designation provided access to $10,000 in city grant funding for the project.


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The Alano Society house recently unveiled their grant-funded facade rehabilitation.
The makeshift entrance vestibule had served the house since the mid-1970s. The Alano Society wanted to replace it a porch similar to the original design.