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Any physical alteration to the exterior of a building or structure affixed to the land that is visible from any public way or place require a Certificate of Appropriateness from the Salisbury Historic District Commission.
Pamphlet - A Guide
Welcome to the Salisbury Historic District, which was first established in 1970.
The Salisbury Historic District Commission has developed this guide to provide Historic District residents with a clear understanding of the process of applying to the Historic District Commission for a Certificate of Appropriateness. The following are outline guidelines; SHDC’s Rules and Procedures can be obtained at Town Hall, on the Town of Salisbury website [www.salisburyct.us} and available to read here on this website. (And via download available on Oct 25, 2016).
Town of Salisbury
Historic District Commission
PO Box 429
Salisbury, CT 06068
The town of Salisbury has been a leader in the historic preservation movement. It was among the first ten towns in Connecticut to form an Historic District Commission. As early as 1962, Salisbury’s First Selectman William B. Barnett appointed a committee to survey the buildings in the township and make recommendations as to which properties should be recognized and included in historic districts. The report was completed in 1969 and the first two historic districts were established in 1970. Since then additional districts have been designated. Salisbury’s districts are varied. Some are made up of single buildings. Other districts contain a group of structures in close proximity to each other. An example of a district with several buildings is Salisbury Center, which includes the Congregational Church, Scoville Memorial Library and the structures which housed Salisbury Academy and Bushnell Tavern. Important individual buildings are Ragamont Inn, Moore Leech’s House, “Holleywood,” and Holley Williams House. In the Township of Salisbury, the historic districts are intended to preserve the distinct character of the community. Salisbury has several communities dating from different periods of history. “Company towns” were built around industries. In Lakeville the knife factory and its associated workers’ housing have been preserved.
The Commission is organized and operates under the authority set forth in Chapter 97a, Section 7-147 of the Statutes of the State of Connecticut as well as those of the Salisbury Historic District Rules and Regulations.
TALK TO US FIRST
The SHDC strongly encourages property owners to discuss their plans with the SHDC before submitting an application. The SHDC is also happy to answer questions as to whether a change is considered a modification requiring a Certificate of Appropriateness or a repair, which does not.
WHAT TYPE OF WORK REQUIRES A CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS
FROM THE SHDC?
Any physical alteration to the exterior of a building or structure affixed to the land that is visible from any public way or place require a Certificate of Appropriateness from the SHDC. The same rules apply to all new structures and demolition. “Public ways” include streets, sidewalks, and public parking lots, both inside and outside the Historic District. Visibility is determined ignoring trees and other plantings which, by their nature, are temporary. The Building and Zoning Officials requires a SHDC Certificate of Appropriateness before issuing a permit for activity within the District. Certificates of Appropriateness must be obtained before building and zoning approvals are sought. A Certificate of Appropriateness may be required even though a building or zoning permit is not.
WHAT GUIDELINES DOES THE SHDC FOLLOW IN MAKING ITS DECISIONS?
The Connecticut State enabling law and SHDC’s Rules and Regulations require that the following standards be used in determining appropriateness:
- Historical and architectural value and significance.
- Architectural style.
- General design.
- Texture and material of the architectural features.
- Type and style of exterior windows, doors, light fixtures, signs, above—ground utility structures, mechanical appurtenances.
- Type and texture of building materials.
- The relationship to the exterior architectural style and pertinent features of other buildings and structures in the neighborhood and
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District. More specific guidelines and technical briefs are provided by the United States Secretary of the Interior to aid homeowners and historic districts. These can be viewed at:
WHEN AND WHERE DOES
THE SHDC MEET?
The SHDC meets the 1st Tuesday of every month at 8:30 a.m. in the Town Hall. Legal Notices of meetings are published in The Lakeville Journal 5 to 15 days prior. Agendas for meetings are available from the Town Clerk the day prior. Minutes are available also from the Town Clerk, 1 to 7 days after meetings.
WHAT IS THE PROCESS TO OBTAIN A CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS? Applications for Certificates of Appropriateness may be obtained and submitted in the Selectman’s Office. The submission deadline is 4:00 p.m., the Friday before the SHDC meeting at which the application will be reviewed. The information to be submitted with the application depends on the nature of the project, but often includes the following: plot plans, architectural drawings, samples of materials being used, as well as manufacturers’ drawings or pictures of the models to be used. Current pictures taken from the public way of the area or structure affected by the proposed change are required. Photos should include buildings and affixed structures. Completed applications received in a timely manner will be placed on the agenda for the next meeting and included in the Legal Notice of the meeting and scheduled for the following month’s public hearing. SHDC meetings consist of two parts: A “Public Hearing” if required and a “Regular Meeting.”
Public Hearings take place in months where there are accepted and warned applications to be reviewed. Commission members discuss pros and cons of the applications. Property owners or their representatives may present their plans. Members of the public may speak in favor or opposition of applications.
At the Regular Meeting, the SHDC votes on the applications discussed in the Public Hearing. New applications are reviewed for completeness. If complete, the applications are accepted for voting and Warning Notices are placed in The Lakeville Journal. During the ensuing month, applicants may submit additional requested material so that their application is deemed complete and ready for review and decisions at the next Public Hearing. Also at the Regular Meeting, minutes are read and other business is discussed. The public may attend this part of the SHDC meeting. Once a Certificate of Appropriateness is approved, the applicant is informed and a copy is filed with the Building and Zoning Official’s Land Use Office. The property owner may then seek any necessary building and zoning approvals. A Certificate of Appropriateness is valid for one year.
HOW LONG DOES THE PROCESS TAKE? Because an application must be discussed at two separate SHDC meetings, the shortest amount of time the process takes is slightly more than a month. Incomplete applications take longer, with the time involved depending on when the applicant provides the needed information. Special meetings may be scheduled if needed. The Commission must render a decision no more than 65 days after an application is deemed complete and filed.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF, AFTER STARTING WORK, I REALIZE THAT CHANGES NEED TO BE MADE TO MY PROPOSAL?
The Certificate of Appropriateness must be amended. Depending on the nature of the change, an additional meeting with the Commission may be required.
WHAT IF I DISAGREE WITH THE SHDC’S DECISION?
If the Commission denies an application, written notice will be sent to the applicant and the Building and Zoning Official along with an explanation of why the application was denied. The SHDC may decide to approve an application with additional stipulations. If the applicant does not wish to implement the stipulations, the applicant may reapply with a modified design proposal or may appeal the Commission’s decision in Superior Court. The Connecticut Statute enabling Historic District Commissions sets forth fines for violations of Commission decisions.
HOW DO I CONTACT THE COMMISSION? Please call 866-245-1276 or write to us at
Salisbury Historic District Commission,
PO Box 429, Salisbury, CT 06068.
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SHDC Pamphlet INSERT
Town of Salisbury
Historic District Commission
PO Box 429
Salisbury, CT 06068
WHAT ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF MODIFICATIONS THAT WOULD NOT REQUIRE A CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS?
- Additions, changes to, or demolition of structures located on the portions of properties that are fully outside the Historic District. (Some properties are partially within the SHD).
- Routine maintenance and repairs not involving a change in materials, design, or texture.
- Painting and paint color of a building.
- Temporary signs in place for 3 days or less.
- Interior alterations.
EXAMPLES OF MODIFICATIONS THAT WOULD REQUIRE A CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS
Actions subject to review include, but are not limited to, construction, alteration, modification, enlargement, replacement or removal of:
- Additions to the main and accessory or outbuildings such as barns, garages and sheds. Examples of changes to these buildings include size or shape of the exterior, window size, placement and number of windows, porches, dormers, skylights and chimneys.
- Fences, stone and other walls, walkways, steps, pools, patios, decks, driveways, parking areas and other site improvements.
- Satellite dishes, TV antennas, solar panels, permanent air conditioning units, and other above-ground utility structures and mechanical appurtenances.
- Outdoor and porch lighting fixtures.
- Architectural details or ornaments.
- Windows, window inserts, storm windows, doors, or storm doors.
- Window shutters, awnings and window boxes.
- Roofing materials where there is a change in the type and or color of shingle or other material used.
- Extensive or total replacement of siding, whether similar to or different from the original.
- Masonry replacements and re-pointing.
- Statuary affixed to the land by physical means of by weight and the force of gravity.
- Demolition of main and accessory buildings or portions thereof, including "demolition by neglect."
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