Standards for altering a historic property

The City applies ten standards to determine if alterations to historic properties can be approved.

Alteration standards for rehabilitation

Taken from the Secretary of the Interior’s (SOI) Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties
  The standard What it means
1 A property will be used as it was historically or be given a new use that requires minimal change to its distinctive materials, features, spaces, and spatial relationships. Keep the same use or choose a new use without major changes to the property.
2 The historic character of a property will be retained and preserved. The removal of distinctive materials or alteration of features, spaces, and spatial relationships that characterize a property will be avoided. Avoid removing the features that reflect the property's history.
3 Each property will be recognized as a physical record of its time, place, and use. Changes that create a false sense of historical development, such as adding conjectural features or elements from other historic properties, will not be undertaken. Avoid adding things that look old but do not fit with the property's history.
4 Changes to a property that have acquired historic significance in their own right will be retained and preserved. If changes after a property was first built are important on their own, they should be kept.
5 Distinctive materials, features, finishes, and construction techniques or examples of craftsmanship that characterize a property will be preserved. Keep the features that reflect the property's history.
6 Deteriorated historic features will be repaired rather than replaced. Where the severity of deterioration requires replacement of a distinctive feature, the new feature will match the old in design, color, texture, and, where possible, materials. Replacement of missing features will be substantiated by documentary and physical evidence. Repair features instead of replacing them. If replacement is needed, try to match what was there historically.
7 Chemical or physical treatments, if appropriate, will be undertaken using the gentlest means possible. Treatments that cause damage to historic materials will not be used. Be gentle with chemical or physical treatments to avoid damage.
8 Archeological resources will be protected and preserved in place. If such resources must be disturbed, mitigation measures will be undertaken. Avoid archaeological resources if possible. If unavoidable, try to reduce the impact.
9 New additions, exterior alterations, or related new construction will not destroy historic materials, features, and spatial relationships that characterize the property. The new work shall be differentiated from the old and will be compatible with the historic materials, features, size, scale and proportion, and massing to protect the integrity of the property and its environment. New features should not damage historic features. New features should look new and complement what is already there.
10 New additions and adjacent or related new construction will be undertaken in a such a manner that, if removed in the future, the essential form and integrity of the historic property and its environment would be unimpaired. New features can be added if they can easily be removed in the future.

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