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									 “Blue Ribbon” Strategies for
Demolition Review Ordinances

Nadine Peterson             Maggie Stier
Preservation Planner        Field Service Representative
NH Division of Historical   NH Preservation Alliance
What is Demolition Review?
                  Demolition review is a
                  legal tool that provides
                  communities with the
                  means to ensure that
                  potentially significant
                  buildings and structures
                  are not demolished
                  without notice and some
                  level of review by a
Why Do Communities Adopt
Demolition Review Procedures?
 Provides “time-out” to evaluate
 significance of the building, meet
 with applicant, explore alternatives
How Does it Work?
A demolition review ordinance can be adopted
    As an amendment to the building code
    Implemented as a stand-alone ordinance
    As a bylaw in an existing historic preservation
              or zoning ordinance
What could be reviewed?

   Buildings built before a specific date or all
    buildings that have attained a certain age on
    the date the application is filed.
   Structures that are visible from a public way
   Structures of a certain size
What Constitutes Demolition?
                    A total demolition is the
                    pulling down, razing or
                    destruction of the entire
                    portion or a building or
                    structure which is above
                    ground regardless of
                    whether another building
                    or structure is
                    constructed within the
                    footprint of the
                    destroyed building or
A partial demolition is
the pulling down,
destruction, or removal of
a substantial portion of the
building or structure or the
removal of architectural
elements which define or
contribute to the character
of the structure.
Benefits of Demolition Review:
                      Allows time to evaluate the building’s
                       significance and/ or request a
                       qualified professional to assist.

                      If the building is determined to be
                       historically or architecturally
                       significant, the issuance of the
                       demolition permit is delayed for a
                       specific period of time (30, 60, 90
                       days or more).

                      During that time, the preservation
                       commission, preservation
                       organizations, concerned citizens,
                       and others may explore alternatives
                       to demolition.
The Process

                         Demolition Permit Application

                         Building over 50 years             Building under 50 years

    HPC Review

                    Building not significant

                                       Demolition permit issued
  Building significant

               Delay period invoked                         Public hearing

                                                  Building preserved

                                                    Building documented and demolished
                    Abbott Homestead

Propo sed for
demoli tion...

                                    382 North State Street
  Please attend:

        The Concord Demolition Review Committee
         Public Hearing - City Council Chambers
             Tuesday, August 17th - 7:00 pm
   For additional information (Code Enforcement) 225-8580
Alternatives that are often
                    rehabilitating the building with the
                     assistance of tax incentives or other
                     financial assistance

                    adapting the building to a new use

                    removing the building to another site

                    finding a new owner who is willing
                     and able to preserve the building

                    incorporating the building into the
                     owner/applicant’s redevelopment

                    and using an alternative site for the
                     owner/applicant’s project
What Exceptions May Apply?

                    Many demolition
                    review laws recognize
                    exceptions upon a
                    showing of economic
                    hardship or where the
                    public safety is at
Developing Your Town’s Program

   Establish an efficient process
   Have resources in place which help applicants and/or
    permitting officials to determine the age and significance
    of their buildings
   Keep the community informed
   Don’t make the delay period too short
   Give local officials such as the preservation commission
    the necessary tools to negotiate a solution
   Enforce your ordinance
Learn from experience in other
communities and share your success!

                      Rolfe Barn, Concord

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