UNDERSTANDING HISTORIC OVERLAY ZONING and the CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS REVIEW PROCESS
Any project affecting the exterior (only) of a property will initiate the Certificate of Appropriateness review process established by the Historic Overlay zoning district. This review process by the Landmarks Commission could delay work from a period of days or weeks up to about six weeks, so be sure to contact Planning Staff to ensure that your project is not delayed unnecessarily.
The Landmarks Commission reviews any project requiring a building or sign permit through an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness. Ordinary repair or maintenance including in-kind replacement of materials does not require a Certificate of Appropriateness but may need to be reviewed by Planning & Development Services staff.
The Landmarks Commission reviews the following miscellaneous exterior alterations that do not otherwise require a building permit. Listed below are examples of alterations reviewed by the Commission:
- Change of exterior color
- Installation of siding (a change of siding is not recommended)
- Window treatment or changes including awnings
- Change in exterior doors, light fixtures, signs, sidewalks, fences, parkways, steps, paving, or other exterior elements, which affects the appearance and historic cohesiveness of the property.
The Landmarks Commission will review any project requiring a demolition permit. If the Commission denies a permit, the demolition could be delayed for one year from the time of the request before you may file a new application.
The decision of the Landmarks Commission may be appealed to the Planning & Zoning Commission within 15 days of decision of the Landmarks Commission. If the appeal is not filed within 15 days, the decision of the Landmarks Commission is final. An applicant can reapply to the Landmarks Commission after a period of 12 months.
The property owner receives an automatic annual reduction of the city property taxes for being in the Historic Overlay zoning district. The annual reduction in the city property taxes will be $200.00 or 20% of the city property taxes, whichever is greater.
The property owner may qualify for additional reductions of the city property taxes for projects that maintain, rehabilitate, or improve the historic property. To recover some or all of the costs of the project, the city property taxes may be reduced by up to 50% for a period of up to 10 years.
A plaque can be placed on the exterior front elevation to identify the property’s historic significance.
For More Information:
If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the requirements and benefits of the Historic Overlay zoning district, please feel free to contact the Planning Services Division at (325) 676-6230.