[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Hudson 5-20-2003 by L.L. No. 3-2003; amended in its entirety 6-1-2005 by L.L. No. 4-2005. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
It is hereby declared, as a matter of public policy, that the protection, enhancement, and perpetuation of landmarks and historic districts are necessary to promote the economic, cultural, educational, and general welfare of the public, inasmuch as the identity of a people is founded on its past, and inasmuch as the City of Hudson has many significant historic, architectural, and cultural resources which constitute its heritage, this chapter is intended to:
Protect and enhance the landmarks and historic districts which represent distinctive elements of Hudson's historic, architectural, and cultural heritage;
Foster civic pride in the accomplishments of the past;
Protect and enhance Hudson's attractiveness to visitors and the support and stimulus to the economy thereby provided;
Insure the harmonious, orderly, and efficient development of the City; and
Promote stewardship through education, advisement and consultation.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ACCOMPANYING DOCUMENTATION
- USGS map, photographs, and sketch maps that accompany completed designation forms.
- ADAPTIVE USE
- The reuse of a building or structure, usually for a purpose different from the original. The term implies that certain structural or design changes have been made to the building in order for it to function in its new use.
- See “sympathetic additions."
- Physically abutting an historic district or a landmark; directly or diagonally across the street from an historic district boundary or a landmark. In those cases where the historic district boundary is drawn through a portion of a block along the side property lines, the properties which continue on the remainder of the block to the next cross street will be considered adjacent.
- To change one or more exterior architectural features of a landmark, an improvement on a landmark site or a structure within an historic district.
- A person, firm, partnership or corporation applying for a decision or a certificate of appropriateness.
- ARCHEOLOGICAL DISTRICT
- A significant concentration, linkage, or continuity of sites important in history or prehistory.
- ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
- Any site that contains archaeological objects and the contextural association of archaeological objects, located on land, including but not limited to submerged and submersible lands, and the bed of any river, creek, stream, etc., within the City's jurisdiction. This can include house sites and roadbeds.
- ARCHITECTURAL SIGNIFICANCE
- Importance of a property based on physical aspects of its design, materials, form, style, or workmanship.
- AREA OF SIGNIFICANCE
- Aspect of historic development in which a property made contributions for which it meets chapter criteria.
- Link of an historic property with an historic event, activity, or person; also, the quality of integrity through which an historic property is linked to a particular past time and place.
- BARRIER-FREE DESIGN
- Refers to arrangements for accommodating persons with visual, hearing, or physical impairments to mobility.
- Lines delineating the geographical extent or area of an historic property.
- BOUNDARY DESCRIPTION
- A precise description of the lines that bound the historic property.
- BOUNDARY JUSTIFICATION
- An explanation of the reasons for selecting the boundaries of an historic property.
- A resource created principally to shelter any form of human activity, such as a house.
- CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS
- A certificate issued by the Historic Preservation Commission or its designee approving plans for alterations, construction, removal, or demolition of a landmark or a structure within an historic district.
- Used only when the exact date is unknown.
- Used to describe buildings associated with organizations such as social clubs, the YMCA and the Masons; the term is not used for the organization itself.
- A group of individuals appointed or assigned to perform a specific function or task; the City of Hudson Preservation Commission.
- CONSERVATION AND RESTORATION
- Refers to efforts to rehabilitate, structurally and cosmetically, downtowns whose buildings have generally declined as commercial centers.
- Building an addition to an existing structure, building a new principal or accessory structure; can also refer to the discussion of the materials of which the building is constructed (subcategories include masonry, steel-frame, wood) or any ground disturbance associated with such activities, including utilities installation and parking facilities.
- Being in actual contact touching a boundary or at a point; next or near in a sequence (example: houses on East Court Street).
- To give or supply in common with others.
- General standards by which the significance of an historic property is judged.
- CRITERIA CONSIDERATIONS
- Additional standards applying to certain kinds of historic properties.
- CULTURAL RESOURCES
- Buildings, sites, structures, objects, or districts evaluated as having significance in prehistory or history.
- CULTURAL RESOURCE SURVEYS
- Inventories of sites, buildings, structures, or objects deemed to have local, regional, national or international cultural significance. The purpose of such surveys is to have a record of what is significant in order to protect such resources from development or encroachment or to document the current appearance or condition for the record. These were formerly referred to as "historic sites surveys."
- CURRENT FUNCTION
- Purpose that a property, or portion of it, currently serves or will serve in the near future.
- Destruction or partial destruction of an improvement.
- DEMOLITION BY NEGLECT
- Allowing a building to fall into such a state of disrepair that it becomes necessary or desirable to demolish it. Property owners have been accused of permitting demolition by neglect on purpose, in order to save demolition costs.
- Quality of integrity applying to elements that create the physical form, plan, space, structure, and style of a property.
- DESIGN CRITERIA (also called "design guidelines")
- A standard of appropriateness or compatibility of a building design within a community or historic district.
- Refers to deliberate demolition of a building or site.
- DISCONTIGUOUS DISTRICT
- An historic or archeological district containing two or more geographically separate areas.
- Legal protection (recorded in a property deed) for distinguishing features of the interior or exterior of a property or in the space surrounding a property because such features are deemed important to be preserved.
- A geometrical projection (as of a building) on a vertical plane. The term used to identify sides of a building.
- An occasion, circumstance, or activity that occurred in a particular period of time or continued over an extended period of time.
- The architectural style, design, general arrangement and components of the outer surface of an improvement, as distinguished from the interior surfaces enclosed by said outer surfaces, including but not limited to the kind of texture of building materials and the type and style of windows, doors, lights, signs, sidewalks, landscaping and other exterior fixtures.
- The front of a building given special architectural treatment.
- Quality of integrity through which an historic property evokes the aesthetic or historic sense of the past time and place.
- FUNCTION (or "use")
- Purpose for which a building, site, structure, object, or district is used.
- GEOGRAPHICAL AREA
- An area of land containing historic or archeological resources that can be identified on a map and delineated by boundaries.
- HISTORIC DISTRICT
- Used only when referring to a neighborhood or region designated by national, state, or local officials as an historic district. It is a geographically defined area, so designated pursuant to this chapter, which possesses a significant concentration, linkage or continuity of sites, buildings, structures, or objects united historically by past events or united aesthetically by plan or development. An historic district may also comprise individual elements, separated geographically, but linked by association or history.
- HISTORIC LANDMARK
- Used only when referring to a site designated by national, state, or local officials as an historic landmark.
- HISTORIC PRESERVATION PHILOSOPHY AND ETHICS
- Refers to the underlying philosophy that provides the basis for any preservation plan: "Why should it be done this way?"
- HISTORIC SIGNIFICANCE
- Importance for which a property has been evaluated and found to meet national, state, or local criteria.
- HISTORIC SITE
- This term is reserved for use for historic sites related to famous or important events or persons.
- HISTORIC STRUCTURES REPORT (HSR)
- An analysis of a building's structural condition, involving written and photographic evidence. The purpose is usually to provide a record of a building's condition before beginning restoration or renovation of the building.
- IMPORTANT PERSON (PERSONAGE)
- An individual who has made significant contributions in American history, local history, architecture, archeology, engineering, and culture.
- A building, structure, pavement, parking facility, fence, gate, wall, sign or awning, work of art or other object constructed by humans.
- The use of vacant land and property within a built-up area for further construction or development, especially as part of a neighborhood preservation or limited growth program.
- Authenticity of a property's historic identity evidenced by the survival of physical characteristics that existed during the property's historic or prehistoric period.
- NONCONTRIBUTING RESOURCE
- A building, site, structure, or object that does not add to the historic significance of a property.
- NOTIFICATION (PUBLIC NOTICE)
- Process through which property owners, the general public and public officials are notified of public hearings and of the intent to make historic designations. Notification can be made through a public notice in a local newspaper or public place, or by certified mail.
- A construction primarily artistic in nature or relatively small in scale and simply constructed, such as a statue or milepost.
- PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
- Process by which the opinions of property owners, public officials, and the general public are considered prior to making a decision to designate or list an historic property.
- Any building, structure, site, or object that is part of or constitutes an historic property.
- Importance of an historic property as defined in the chapter criteria in one or more areas of significance. A statement is to be included in the application signifying the reasons a property is significant and meets the criteria of the chapter.
- Location of a significant event, a prehistoric or historic occupation or activity, or a building or structure, whether standing, ruined, or vanished, where the location itself possesses historic, cultural, or archeological value regardless of the value of any existing structure.
- An individual's responsibility to manage his life and property with proper regard to the rights of others.
- STREET FURNITURE
- Refers to objects such as streetlights, benches, and so forth that are part of a streetscape.
- SYMPATHETIC ADDITION
- Additions to structures, which follow or complement the architectural style or scale of the original building.
- A trend or pattern in history or prehistory relating to a particular aspect of cultural development.
- VERBAL BOUNDARY DESCRIPTION
- A statement that gives the precise boundaries of an historic property, such as a lot number, town, etc.
- The quality of integrity applying to the physical evidence of the crafts of a particular culture, people, or artisan.
There is hereby created a Commission to be known as the "Historic Preservation Commission."
The Commission shall consist of seven members to be appointed, to the extent available in the community, by the Mayor. All new members, but the architect-member, shall be residents of the City of Hudson and remain so throughout their term.
[Amended 8-15-2006 by L.L. No. 11-2006]
At least one shall be an architect experienced in working with historic buildings; if there is no resident of Hudson who has these credentials and is willing to serve on the Commission, a nonresident may be appointed to the Commission;
At least one shall be an historian;
At least one shall be a resident of an historic district;
At least one shall have demonstrated significant interest in and commitment to the field of historic preservation either by involvement in a local historic preservation group, employment, or volunteer activity in the field of historic preservation, or other serious interest in the field;
All members shall have a known interest in historic preservation and architectural development within the City of Hudson;
All members, but the architect-member, shall be residents of the City of Hudson;
The Chairperson of the Planning and Land Use Committee of the Common Council shall be the liaison between the Historic Preservation Commission and the Common Council and shall report to the Common Council regularly on the actions and proposed actions of the Historic Preservation Commission.
Commission members shall serve for a term of four years, with the exception of the initial term of two of the members which shall be two years, two additional members who shall serve for three years, and three who shall serve for four years.
The Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Commission shall be elected by and from among the members of the Commission to serve two-year terms.
New Commission members shall be appointed by the Mayor after consideration of recommendations put forward by the existing Commission. The Mayor shall not be bound by the recommendations of the existing Commission.
[Amended 10-18-2005 by L.L. No. 7-2005]
The powers of the Commission shall include:
Adoption of criteria for the identification of significant historic, architectural, and cultural landmarks and for the delineation of historic districts;
Consultation with individuals or groups in the carrying out of its duties;
Conducting of surveys of significant historic, architectural, and cultural landmarks and historic districts within the City;
Recommendation to the Common Council of designation of identified structures or resources as landmarks and historic districts;
Increasing public awareness of the value of historic, cultural, and architectural preservation by developing and participating in public education programs;
Making recommendations to City government concerning the utilization of state, federal, or private funds to promote the preservation of landmarks and historic districts within the City or seeking outside private charitable funds to promote the preservation of landmarks and districts;
Employment of professional consultants as necessary to carry out the duties of the Commission;
Promulgation of rules and regulations as necessary for the conduct of its business;
The making of recommendations to the City government concerning the acquisition of facade easements or other interests in real property as necessary to carry out the purposes of this chapter;
Recommending acquisition of a landmark structure by the City government where its preservation is essential to the purposes of this chapter and where private preservation is not feasible;
Approval or disapproval of applications for certificates of appropriateness pursuant to this chapter;
The power to request a budget for continuing expenses of the Commission; and
Commission and supervise, as needed, such updated surveys, done by a qualified person or organization, of the entire City of Hudson that update the 1985 survey of the National Register of Historic Places done by the National Parks Service and which shall be the basis of consideration for future designations of these properties as historic landmarks or districts.
The Commission shall meet at least monthly, but meetings may be held at any time on the written request of any two of the Commission members or on the call of the Chairman or the Mayor. A majority of the total board must be assembled to constitute a quorum, and a majority of the total voting board must approve applications. No more than two unexcused absences within a year are allowed or the member appointed may be terminated by the Mayor.
The Commission may propose or may receive a proposal for an individual property, structure, park, work of art or statue as a landmark if it:
Possesses special character or historic or aesthetic interest or value as part of the architectural, cultural, political, economic, or social history of the locality, region, state, or nation; or
Is identified with historic personages; or
Is the work of a builder, architect, or designer whose work has significantly influenced an age.
Proposal for group of properties; filing of boundary descriptions.
The Commission may propose or receive a proposal for a group of properties as an historic district if it:
Contains properties that possess special character or historic or aesthetic interest or value as part of the cultural, political, economic, or social history of the locality, region, state, or nation; or
Contains properties that are identified with historic personages; or
Contains properties that are the work of a builder, architect, or designer whose work has significantly influenced an age; or
Contains properties that, because of unique location or singular characteristic, represent established and familiar visual features of the neighborhood; or
Contains properties that meet one or more of the criteria for designation as a landmark; or
Contains properties that embody the distinguishing characteristics of an architectural style; or
Contains properties that, by reason of possessing such qualities, constitute a distinct section of the City.
A majority of the properties meet one or more of the criteria for designation of a landmark; or
The area constitutes a significant and distinguishable entity whose components may lack individual distinction; or
The boundaries of each historic district designated henceforth shall be specified in detail and shall be filed, in writing, in the City Clerk's office for public inspection.
Notice of a proposed designation shall be sent by certified mail to the owner(s) of the property(ies) proposed for designation, provided that property owners are 10 or fewer in number, describing the property and announcing a public hearing by the Commission to consider the designation. Where the proposed designation involves more than 10 property owners, notice may instead be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation at least 14 days prior to the date of the public hearing, and a notice by post card shall be sent to each individual property owner so designated at least 14 days prior to the date of the public hearing. Once the Commission has issued notice of a proposed designation, no building permits shall be issued by the Building Inspector until the Commission has made its decision. An aggrieved owner may make application, first to the Commission, and then to the Common Council, for a building permit based upon a proof of lack of historical significance or proof of compliance with the certificate of appropriateness standards.
[Amended 10-18-2005 by L.L. No. 7-2005; 8-15-2006 by L.L. No. 11-2006]
The Commission shall determine if the application is complete and then shall hold a public hearing prior to designation of any landmark or historic district. The Commission, owners, and any interested parties may present testimony or documentary evidence at the hearing, which will become part of a record regarding the historic, architectural, or cultural importance of the proposed landmark or historic district. The record may also contain reports by consultants, public comments, or other evidence offered outside of the hearing. At the conclusion of the public hearing, the Commission shall make a recommendation as to designation of any landmark or historic district within 30 days. This recommendation shall be forwarded to the Common Council, which shall vote on the historic designation within 75 days. The historic designation shall be adopted by a majority vote of the Common Council. The determination shall be made based on the same proof before the Historic Preservation Commission.
[Amended 8-15-2006 by L.L. No. 11-2006]
Upon designation, the Commission shall forward notice of each property designated as a landmark and the boundaries of each designated historic district to the offices of the Columbia County Clerk for recording.
[Amended 6-15-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
A certificate of appropriateness is required to carry out any exterior alteration, additions, restoration, reconstruction, demolition, new construction, or moving of a landmark or property within an historic district, or to make any material change in the appearance of such a property or its windows, or install or move a satellite dish. This certificate is to be obtained prior to obtaining a building permit. A certificate of appropriateness must be obtained even if a building permit is not required. Noncontributing properties within an historic district must also follow the same procedure. An application for a certificate of appropriateness for the alteration or addition of a sign in an historic district or associated with a landmark may only be submitted to the Historic Preservation Commission after issuance by the Building Inspector of an erection permit pursuant to Chapter 244.
In passing on an application for a certificate of appropriateness, the Historic Preservation Commission shall not consider changes to interior spaces unless they are specifically landmarked. The Commission's decision shall be based on the following principles:
Properties that contribute to the character of the historic district shall be retained, with their historic features altered as little as possible;
Any alteration of existing properties shall be compatible with their historic character, as well as with the surrounding district; and
New construction shall be compatible with the district in which it is located.
In applying the principle of compatibility, the Commission shall consider the following factors:
The general design, character, and appropriateness to the property of the proposed alteration or new construction;
The scale of the proposed alteration or new construction in relation to the property itself, surrounding properties, and the neighborhood;
Texture, materials, and color and their relation to similar features of other properties in the neighborhood;
Visual compatibility with surrounding properties, including proportion of the property's front facade, proportion and arrangement of windows and other openings within the facade, roof shape, and the rhythm of spacing of properties on streets, including setback; and
The importance of historic, architectural, or other features to the significance of the property.
Prior to the commencement of any work requiring a certificate of appropriateness, the owner shall file an application for such a certificate with the Historic Preservation Commission. The application shall contain:
[Amended 8-15-2006 by L.L. No. 11-2006]
Name, address, and telephone number of the applicant;
Location and tax ID number;
Photographs of property from public roadways.
Elevation drawings of proposed changes, if available;
Perspective drawings, including relationship to adjacent properties, if available;
Samples of materials or color to be used;
Where the proposal includes signs or lettering, a scale drawing showing the type of lettering to be used, all dimensions and colors, a description of materials to be used, the method of illumination, a plan showing the sign's location on the property, and a copy of the signed erection permit issued by the Building Inspector;
[Amended 6-15-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
Any other information that the Commission may reasonably require in order to visualize the proposed work; and
Application must be signed and dated by the owner of record.
No building permit shall be issued for such proposed work until a certificate of appropriateness has first been issued by the Historic Preservation Commission. The certificate of appropriateness required by this chapter shall be in addition to and not in lieu of any building permit that may be required by any other ordinance of the City of Hudson.
The Commission shall approve, deny, or approve the permit with modifications within 60 days from receipt of the completed application. The Commission shall hold a public hearing on the application, at which an opportunity will be provided for proponents and opponents of the application to present their views. The Commission may waive the necessity of a public hearing for minor cosmetic alterations such as replacement of windows and other such activities.
[Amended 10-18-2005 by L.L. No. 7-2005]
All decisions of the Commission shall be in writing and shall be filed with the City Clerk's Office for public inspection. The Commission's decision shall state the reasons for approving, denying or modifying any application. A copy of any denial of a certificate of appropriateness shall be sent to the applicant by registered mail. A copy of any approval or approval with modifications shall be sent to the applicant by first-class mail, unless the applicant otherwise receives a copy of such approval or approval with modifications in person at a meeting of the Commission.
[Amended 8-15-2006 by L.L. No. 11-2006; 11-16-2010 by L.L. No. 6-2010]
Certificates of appropriateness shall be valid for 12 months, after which time the owner must reapply if he/she wishes to undertake work on the property.
An applicant whose certificate of appropriateness for a proposed demolition has been denied may apply for relief on the ground of hardship. In order to prove the existence of hardship, the applicant shall establish that:
The property is incapable of earning a reasonable return, regardless of whether that return represents the most profitable return possible;
The property cannot be adapted for any other use, whether by the current owner or by a purchaser, which would result in a reasonable return; and
Good faith efforts to find a purchaser interested in acquiring the property and preserving it have failed.
Demolition shall be permitted only after the owner of the site has submitted and obtained design approval of his/her plans for new development under the provisions of this chapter, including an acceptable timetable and guarantees, which may include performance bonds for demolition and completion of the project. In no case shall the time between demolition and commencement of new construction or lot improvement exceed six months.
An applicant whose certificate of appropriateness for a proposed alteration has been denied may apply for relief on the ground of hardship. In order to prove the existence of hardship, the applicant shall establish that the property is incapable of earning a reasonable return, regardless of whether that return represents the most profitable return possible.
After receiving written notification from the Commission of the denial of a certificate of appropriateness, an applicant may commence the hardship process. No building permit or demolition permit shall be issued unless the Commission makes a finding that a hardship exists.
The Commission shall hold a public hearing on the hardship application, at which an opportunity will be provided for proponents and opponents of the application to present their views.
The applicant shall consult in good faith with the Commission, local preservation groups, and interested parties in a diligent effort to seek an alternative that will result in preservation of the property.
All decisions of the Commission shall be in writing. A copy shall be sent to the applicant by registered mail and a copy filed with the City Clerk's office for public inspection. The Commission's decision shall state the reasons for granting or denying the hardship application. If the application is granted, the Commission shall approve only such work as is necessary to alleviate the hardship.
Any City agency having responsibility for the preparation of plans for the construction, reconstruction, alteration or demolition of any improvement or proposed improvement which is owned by the City or is to be constructed upon property owned by the City, and is located or is to be constructed on or adjacent to an historic site, in or adjacent to an historic district, shall refer such plans to the Commission for a recommendation prior to the City action approving or otherwise authorizing the use of such plans with respect to securing the performance of such work. Such recommendations shall be submitted to the Mayor and to the agency having such responsibility within 45 days after the Commission receives the plans for review.
All work performed pursuant to a certificate of appropriateness issued under this chapter shall conform to any requirements included therein. It shall be the duty of the Building Code Enforcement Officer to inspect periodically any such work to assure compliance. In the event work is found that is not being performed in accordance with the certificate of appropriateness, or upon notification of such fact by the Historic Preservation Commission, the Building Code Enforcement Officer shall issue a stop-work order and all work shall immediately cease. No further work shall be undertaken on the project as long as a stop-work order is in effect.
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prevent the ordinary maintenance and repair of any exterior architectural feature of a landmark or property within an historic district which does not involve a change in design, material, color, or outward appearance. No owner or person with an interest in real property designated as a landmark or included within an historic district shall permit the property to fall into a serious state of disrepair so as to result in the deterioration of any exterior architectural feature which would, in the judgment of the Historic Preservation Commission, produce a detrimental effect upon the character of the historic district as a whole or the life and character of the property itself. Examples of such deterioration include:
Deterioration of exterior walls or other vertical supports;
Deterioration of roofs or other horizontal members;
Deterioration of exterior chimneys;
Deterioration or crumbling of exterior stucco or mortar;
Ineffective waterproofing of exterior walls, roofs, or foundations, including broken windows or doors; and
Deterioration of any feature so as to create a hazardous condition which could lead to the claim that demolition is necessary for the public safety.
The Building Inspector, in issuing permits, shall determine whether referral to the Historic Preservation is necessary. The Historic Preservation Commission shall notify the Building Inspector of all determinations.
Failure to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed a violation, and the violator shall be liable to a fine of not more than $250 for each day the violation continues.
Any person who demolishes, alters, constructs, or permits a designated property to fall into a serious state of disrepair in violation of this chapter shall be required to restore the property and its site to its appearance prior to the violation. Any action to enforce this subsection shall be brought by the City Attorney. This civil remedy shall be in addition to and not in lieu of any criminal prosecution and penalty.
This chapter shall in no way affect, supersede or abridge any emergency powers, regarding situations arising from man-made or natural disasters, of the Code Enforcement Officer as to public safety, health and welfare.
Applications for certificates of appropriateness not acted upon within 62 days of being complete shall be deemed approved.
Any person aggrieved by a decision of the Historic Preservation Commission may, within 60 days of the decision, file a written application with the Common Council for review of the decision. Reviews shall be conducted based on the same record that was before the Commission and using the same criteria.