In order to promote key purposes of this chapter, summarized in § 120-1, to preserve the unique character of the Village and its historic structures, sites, cultural features, and architectural qualities, the Village finds that properties listed on the United States Department of Interior's National Register of Historic Places deserve an extra level of protection under a locally designated Historic District Overlay (HDO). This HDO includes all the properties in the Rhinebeck Village Historic District together with the Astor Home for Children on Mill Road (6369 Mill Street), the Benner House (1 Mill Street), and The Maples (Rhinebeck Health Center, 108 Montgomery Street), as identified in the 1993 Village of Rhinebeck Master Plan, page 24. The Village Board of Trustees may designate historic districts and landmark protection measures under General Municipal Law §§ 96a and 119-aa, and amend the boundaries and properties of the HDO and map at any time, using the amendment procedure in § 120-67 of this chapter.
The historic characteristics of the HDO are an essential component of Rhinebeck's distinctive identity, the quality of life for its residents, and the Village's economic success through attraction of new investments and promotion of tourism. The HDO is enacted for the following purposes:
To protect and enrich recognized historic structures and properties as important and irreplaceable features of Rhinebeck's historic, architectural, and cultural heritage;
To foster civic pride in the accomplishments and craftsmanship of the past;
To enhance the Village's attractiveness to residents and visitors as a stimulus to the local economy;
To provide a careful evaluation of any proposed action that may diminish the quality of the HDO and affect the values of neighboring properties; and
To ensure the healthy, orderly, and efficient development of the Village and promote the cultural, educational, economic, and general welfare of the public.
Within the HDO, all new construction and major exterior additions/modifications to existing buildings shall require site plan approval from the Planning Board, consistent with the provisions in Article XI of Chapter 120 of the Village of Rhinebeck Code. This includes single-family dwellings and their accessory structures over 250 square feet. Major exterior additions or modifications shall include new replacement siding materials and changes to significant architectural features, as determined by the Zoning Enforcement Officer, but shall not include landscaping, paint colors consistent with Subsection D(9) below, roofing material changes, normal repair and maintenance or replacement of existing features in kind.
In reviewing applications for site plan approval in the HDO, the Planning Board's decision shall be based on the following standards:
Whenever possible, structures listed as contributing buildings as defined in Chapter 64 of the Historic Buildings Protection Law shall be retained and their exterior historic features shall not be significantly altered. In order to maintain existing carriage houses, barns and other contributing accessory structures, conversion to active allowable uses should be encouraged, including consideration of any reasonable area variances.
Any new construction or alteration of an existing structure shall be compatible with the contributing historic property itself and surrounding historic properties in terms of height, setbacks, roof shapes and cornice features, proportions for facades and window openings, porch details, materials, and rhythm of spacing along the street.
Individual window proportions shall be greater in height than width, although the Planning Board may permit exceptions for transom and other specialty windows. Mirrored, reflective or darkly tinted glass all-glass walls (except for greenhouses) are prohibited. Any shutters shall match the size of the window openings and appear functional.
Commercial buildings in the Village Center District shall have at least 70% glass on the first floor facade.
Structures on the same lot shall be designed to create a cohesive visual relationship between buildings.
Recommended facade materials include wood, brick, stone, stucco, solid PVC or fiber cement siding and trim. Vinyl or aluminum siding, sheet trim, shutters, and awnings, and artificial stone or brick, exposed concrete blocks or concrete walls, plywood or other large prefabricated panels and unpainted lumber shall be prohibited.
Although landscaping changes alone do not require site plan approval for existing single-family dwellings, the Village strongly recommends the preservation of mature trees and the use of native species, whenever possible. For new building construction, landscaping elements are within the scope of site plan review.
A broad range of colors is permitted, but brighter, more vivid shades should only be used as accent colors, not primary surface colors. Fluorescent, neon, metallic, or other intentionally garish colors, as well as stripes, dots, or other incompatible painted patterns, shall be prohibited. Color choices should be designed to be compatible with the architectural style of the structure and to complement surrounding historic buildings.
Since the Historic District Overlay includes an eclectic mix of buildings with a period of significance from 1700 to 1930, adding interest and variety to the streetscape is appropriate. New structures can be differentiated from historic buildings and show progress over time, primarily in the details and variations on overall historically compatible themes.
The Planning Board shall have the discretion upon application to vary or waive the criteria standards set forth in Subsection D above based on the following criteria:
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 or 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 the spacing of properties on the street, including setback;
The importance of historic, architectural, or other features to the significance of the property.