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Section 7.7 Preservation of Historic Structures

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A. Purpose
In order to encourage the preservation of structures contributing to positive aspects
of community character, the Commission may, by Special Permit, allow a
minimum area or dimensional requirement (such as minimum yard setback) to be
reduced or a maximum area or dimensional requirement (such as maximum
building coverage) to be exceeded in accordance with the following standards.
B. Historic Structure Designation Criteria

B. Historic Structure Designation Criteria
1. For purposes of this Section, structures may, upon application by the owner,
be designated as historic structures by the Commission where said structures
are seventy five (75) years old or older, and are found by the Commission
to be directly associated with the history of the subject property and:
a. exemplify or reflect the broad cultural, political economic or social history
of the nation, state or Town; or
b. are identified with historic personages or with important events in the national,.
state or local history; or
c. embody the distinguishing characteristics of an architectural type inherently
valuable for study of a period, style, method of construction or of
indigenous materials or craftsmanship; or
d. are representative of a notable work of a master builder, designer or architect
who influenced his or her age; or
e. have yielded, or may be likely to yield, information important to history.
2. The Commission encourages property owners to seek designation of historic
significance from local, state or federal organizations and to display appropriate
historic plaques.

C. Application Requirements
Application for the Special Permit shall be made in the form prescribed by
the Commission, consistent with all applicable provisions of these regulations
particularly Subsection 8.2.B.4 and shall contain, at a minimum:
a. accurate exterior elevations or photographs of each side, of each historic
structure proposed tc be preserved,
b. a survey map and other documentation sufficient to establish the historic,
cultural, or architectural significance of the historic structure and compliance
with the standards set forth in Subsection 7.7.B and any other standards
contained in these regulations as determined applicable by the
Commission.
2. The Commission shall determine, in its sole discretion, from factual evidence
or expert opinion that:
a. the structure in question contributes to community character or possesses
a degree of historic significance (which may be evidenced by its
age, architectural uniqueness, or cultural value) which would represent a
cultural benefit to the community if preserved, and,
b. the structure in question requires some measure of regulatory relief to allow
for its preservation.

D.  Considerations
1.  When considering an application or any action regarding a use or a structure
under this Section the following shall apply:
a. the maximum variation allowable by the Commission, of any applicable
regulation, shall be 75% of the regulation requirement, and
b. the Commission may solicit pertinent information from outside experts
such as the Historical Society, architectural consultants, historians or any
other person(s) it may find as qualified to comment and provide information
on the subject application.

2.   When reviewing Special Permits under this Section, the Commission shall, in
addition to the Special Permit Criteria of Section 8.2.B.4, consider and determine
in each case whether the proposal will:
a. have a positive or negative effect on the orderly growth and development
of the area,
b. promote the general welfare of the residents of the Town,
c. adversely affect safety in the streets,
d. permit the retention of historic structures that would be in scale and compatible
with surrounding structures,
e. allow for the preservation of historic structures having special historical,
cultural andlor architectural merit, including in the Commission's sole discretion,
but not limited to structures retaining historical integrity of those
features related to history, architecture andlor construction methods, and
f. further the stated goals and policies of the current Plan of Conservation
and Development.
3. After the required Public Hearing is held and findings are made, the Commission
may, in its sole discretion, allow an area or dimensional requirement
to be reduced or exceeded, up to the maximum allowed by Subsection
7.7.D.l .a.

E.  Limitations

1.   Once a Special Permit has been granted under this Section, the historic
structure shall not be relocated or modified in any way unless such modification
or relocation is approved by the Commission. If a modification is proposed
as minor in nature, the Commission may delegate approval to the
Zoning Inspector upon submission of appropriate information.

2.   Any Special Permit granted under this Section shall prescribe the specific
conditions to be observed and structural appearance to be maintained for the
preserved structure. Any unauthorized deviation from these conditions shall
constitute a nullification of the Special Permit approval. Upon such nullification,
the property may be subject to any and all legal means available to the
Commission to correct any unauthorized work at the property owners expense,
or may be subject to any other enforcement action the Commission,
through the Zoning Inspector, deems necessary. In addition, any permits issued
subsequent to the granting of the Special Permit may be voided and
the work associated with any such permit may be required to be removed.

3.   Any proposed modifications to the structure or the use of the structure shall
be made known to the Commission at the time of the Special Permit application.
Any subsequent changes to the use or the structure shall only be accomplished
as specified herein. Emergency repairs may be made by the
owner as a result of fire or other similar type damage and the Zoning Inspector
shall be notified not later than 72 hours after the repair or stabilization is
initiated.

4.   Any significant maintenance requirements to any structure covered by this
regulation shall be done promptly by the owner. Failing this, the owner shall
be notified that, if the maintenance requirements of the original Special Permit
are not complied with, the Special Permit may be determined to be violated
and may be nullified by the Commission.

5.   Any change in use of any structure which has an approved Special Permit
may only be authorized by application to, and approval by, the Commission.
Said application shall contain all relevant information pertaining to the previously
approved and proposed change of use for the historic structure. The
Commission shall determine if the proposed change in use is appropriate
and in keeping with the intent of the original Special Permit granted for the
subject historic structure according to the standards referenced in this Section.