[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Town of Sykesville 2-12-2001 by Ord. No. 223. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Zoning — See Ch. 180.
The preservation of sites and structures of cultural, historic, architectural, or archeological significance together with their appurtenances and environmental settings is a public purpose in this Town. The Mayor and Council of the Town of Sykesville believe that the public interest and convenience requires the preservation and protection of certain places and areas of historic interest, exterior architectural or archeological features and examples of the types of architecture found in older areas of the Town of Sykesville.
The purposes of this chapter shall be:
To safeguard the heritage of the Town of Sykesville by preserving sites, structures, or districts therein which reflect elements of cultural, social, economic, political, archeological or architectural history;
To stabilize and improve property values of such sites, structures or districts;
To foster civic beauty;
To strengthen the local economy;
To promote the preservation and appreciation of the sites structures, and districts for the education and welfare of the residents of the Town of Sykesville and Carroll County.
The Mayor and Town Council of the Town of Sykesville derive authority for this chapter by virtue of the terms of the Maryland Code, Historic Area Zoning, Article 66B, §§ 8.01 through 8.17, as amended from time to time.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- APPURTENANCES and ENVIRONMENTAL SETTINGS
- Includes walkways and driveways (whether paved or not), trees, landscaping, pastures, croplands, waterways, and rocks.
- Includes any willful neglect in maintenance and repair of a structure, not including any appurtenances and environmental settings, that does not result from financial inability to maintain and repair the structure and that threatens to result in any substantial deterioration of the exterior features of the structure.
- A significant concentration, linkage, or continuity of sites, structures, or objects united historically or aesthetically by plan or physical development.
- ROUTINE MAINTENANCE
- Work that does not alter the exterior fabric or features of a site or structure and has no material effect on the historical, archeological, or architectural significance of the historical site or structure.
- The location of an event of historic significance or a structure, whether standing or ruined, which possess historic, archeological, or cultural significance.
- A combination of material to form a construction that is stable; including among other things, buildings, stadiums, reviewing stands, platforms, stagings, observation towers, radio towers, water tanks and towers, trestles, bridges, piers, paving, bulkheads, wharves, sheds, coal bins, shelters, fences and display signs visible or intended to be visible from a public way. The term also includes natural land formations and appurtenances and environmental settings. The term shall be construed as if followed by the words "or part thereof."
The Town of Sykesville Historic Districts shall consist of two districts. The first district covers the area as shown on the Downtown Historic District Map, which is hereby incorporated as part of this chapter (the "Downtown Historic District"). The second district covers the area as shown on the Warfield Historic District Map, which is hereby incorporated as part of this chapter (the "Warfield Historic District") Collectively, they are referred to as the "Historic Districts."
Editor's Note: The maps referred to are on file in the Town Manager's office (or in the office of any staff member who may be designated by the Town Manager).
The Mayor and Council of the Town of Sykesville hereby creates a commission to be called the "Historic District Commission" (Commission).
The Commission shall have a membership of seven persons, all of whom possess a demonstrated special interest, specific knowledge, or professional or academic training in such fields as history, architecture, architectural history, planning, archeology, anthropology, curation, conservation, landscape architecture, historic preservation, urban design or related disciplines and agree to serve on this Commission.
The criteria for Commission membership under the category of "demonstrated special interest" may be satisfied either by formal training in one or more of the fields listed in Subsection A of this section, or membership in a preservation-related organization. The criteria for membership under the category of "specific knowledge" may be satisfied by formal, post-secondary education, employment or practical experience in one or more of the above-listed fields. The criteria for Commission membership under the category of "professional or academic training" may be satisfied by, at a minimum, two years' experience as a professional or a bachelor's degree in one or more of the above-listed fields.
The member shall be appointed for terms of three years each except that in making the initial appointments, some appointments shall be established for less than three years in order that, as these initial terms expire, all subsequent appointments shall be for three years and shall not expire at the same time. Members of the Commission are eligible for reappointment.
Any member of the Commission may be removed by the Mayor with approval of the Council after a public hearing, for inefficiency, neglect of duty or malfeasance in office. The Mayor shall file with the Town Clerk a written statement of the reason or reasons for the removal.
Any vacancy on the Commission shall be filled by the Mayor with approval of the Council upon recommendation by the Commission for the unexpired term of the particular position.
A majority of the then members of the Commission shall constitute a majority for the transaction of business, and a majority vote of the members present shall control any action of the Commission.
The Commission, on behalf of the Town, shall have the right to accept and use gifts and donations made to the Town or to the Commission for the exercise of the Commission's functions. Gifts or donations shall not be made directly to a Commission member, nor shall such gifts or donations otherwise violate any Town, state, or federal laws regarding ethics or conflicts of interest.
The Commission may require, as part of a permit approval, that easements in connection with individual sites or structures, or with sites or structures located in or adjacent to the Town's Historic Districts, be granted to the Town. Such easements may grant to the Town, the Commission, the residents of the Historic Districts, and the general public the right to ensure that any site or any structure and surrounding property upon which it is applied is protected, in perpetuity, from changes which would affect its historical, archeological, or architectural significance.
Before the construction, exterior alteration, reconstruction, moving or demolition of any site or structure within the Historic Districts, any portion of which is visible or intended to be visible from a public way, the person, individual, firm, or corporation proposing to make the construction or change shall file with the Commission, through the Town Manager (or such other staff member who may be designated by the Town Manager), an application for permission to construct, alter, reconstruct, move or demolish the site or structure. Every such application shall be referred to and considered by the Commission and accepted or rejected by the Commission. An application which is identical to a rejected application shall not be resubmitted within a period of one year after the rejection. No permit for any such change may be granted until the Commission has acted thereon as hereinafter provided.
[Amended 6-11-2007 by Ord. No. 268]
The Commission may recommend and the Town may adopt, by resolution, rehabilitation and new construction design guidelines consistent with those generally recognized by the Maryland Historical Trust. Guidelines may include design characteristics intended to meet the needs of particular types of sites, structures, and districts, and may identify categories or changes that are so minimal in nature that they do not affect historic, archeological, or architectural significance and require no review by the Commission. These guidelines shall be utilized by the Commission in its review of applications.
In reviewing applications, the Commission shall give consideration to:
The historic, archeological, or architectural significance of the site or structure and its relationship to the historic, archeological, or architectural significance of the surrounding area.
The relationship of the exterior architectural features of a structure to the remainder of the structure and to the surrounding area.
The general compatibility of the exterior design, scale, proportion, arrangement, texture, and materials proposed to be used.
Any other factors, including aesthetic factors which the Commission deems to be pertinent.
The Commission shall consider only exterior features of a structure and shall not consider any interior arrangements. Also, the Commission shall not disapprove an application except with respect to the several factors specified in this section and in § 93-9 above.
The map entitled "Downtown Historic District Sykesville, Maryland 1995," attached to this chapter, is hereby adopted as a guide to the ranking of the significance of buildings in the Downtown Historic District. The map shall be utilized as a guide for the Commission's decisions under this chapter.
Editor's Note: The map referred to is on file in the Town Manager's office (or in the office of such other staff member who may be designated by the Town Manager).
Downtown Historic District design guidelines.
The Commission's decisions applicable to the Downtown Historic District shall be guided by the Town of Sykesville Historic District Design Guidelines (2000), as amended from time to time by the Historic District Commission, provided that such amendments to the Town of Sykesville Historic District Guidelines (2000) have been approved by resolution of the Mayor and Town Council of the Town of Sykesville, the provisions of which are hereby adopted and incorporated herein by reference; and
The Commission's decisions applicable to the Downtown Historic District shall be guided by the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and guidelines for rehabilitating historic buildings, as amended from time to time, the provisions of which are hereby adopted and incorporated herein by reference.
Warfield Historic District design guidelines.
The Commission's decisions applicable to the Warfield Historic District shall be guided by the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and guidelines for rehabilitating historic buildings, as amended from time to time, the provisions of which are hereby adopted and incorporated herein by reference.
In addition to all other applicable provisions of this chapter regarding rehabilitation of historic buildings lying within the Warfield Historic District (identified as Buildings A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, T, W, Auditorium, Engine House, Hubner and Root Cellar and any appurtenances thereto, as located on the attached "Site Map of the Warfield Complex"), the Historic District Commission's decisions shall be guided by the Historic Preservation Guidelines for the Warfield Complex and Summary of Historic Preservation Guidelines for the Warfield Complex, as amended from time to time by the Historic District Commission and provided that such amendments have been approved by resolution of the Mayor and Town Council of the Town of Sykesville, the provisions of which are hereby adopted and incorporated herein by reference.
[Added 5-28-2002 by Ord. No. 228; amended 1-24-2011 by Ord. No. 273]
In addition to all other applicable provisions of this chapter regarding new construction within the Warfield Historic District, the Historic District Commission's decisions shall be guided by the "Warfield Commercial Center: New Construction Guidelines and Standards for Signs and Energy Efficiency," along with its Appendix, as amended from time to time by the Historic District Commission and provided that such amendments have been approved by resolution of the Mayor and Town Council of the Town of Sykesville, the provisions of which are hereby adopted and incorporated herein by reference.
The Commission shall be strict in its judgment of plans for sites or structures determined by research to be of historic, archeological, or architectural significance. The Commission shall be lenient in its judgment of plans for sites or structures of little historic, archeological or architectural significance, or for plans involving new construction, unless such plans would seriously impair the historic, archeological, or architectural significance of the surrounding site or structure. The Commission is not required to limit construction, reconstruction, or alteration to the architectural style of any one period.
If an application is submitted for construction, reconstruction, or alterations affecting a site or the exterior appearance of a structure, or for the moving or demolition of a structure, the preservation of which the Commission considers to be of unusual importance to the Town of Sykesville or Carroll County or of unusual importance to the entire state or nation, the Commission shall attempt, with the owner of the structure, to formulate an economically feasible plan for the preservation of the site or structure. Unless in these circumstances the Commission is satisfied that the proposed construction, alteration or reconstruction will not materially impair the historic, archeological, or architectural significance of the site or structure, the Commission shall reject the application, filing a copy of its rejection with the Zoning Administrator and the Carroll County Office of Permits and Inspections.
If an application is submitted for construction, reconstruction, or alteration affecting a site or the exterior of a structure or for the moving or demolition of a structure that the Commission considers to be of unusual importance and no economically feasible plan can be formulated, the Commission shall have 90 days from the time it concludes that no economically feasible plan can be formulated to negotiate with the owner and other parties in an effort to find a means of preserving the site or structure.
In the case of a site or structure considered to be valuable for its historic, archeological, or architectural significance, the Commission may approve the proposed construction, reconstruction, alteration, moving, or demolition despite the fact the changes come within the provisions of § 93-12 of this chapter if:
The site or structure is a deterrent to a major improvement program, which will be of substantial benefit to the Town of Sykesville;
Retention of the site or structure would cause undue financial hardship on the owner; or
The retention of the site or structure would not be in the best interests of a majority of persons in the community.
The Commission shall adopt such rules and regulations as may be necessary for the proper transaction of its business. Any interested person or a person's representative is entitled to appear and be heard at any public hearing conducted by the Commission.
The Commission shall file with the Zoning Administrator and the Carroll County Office of Permits and Inspections a certificate of its approval, modification or rejection of all applications and plans submitted for its review. Work shall not be commenced on any such project until such a certificate of approval has been filed, and the Zoning Administrator and/or the Carroll County Permits and Inspections shall not issue a building permit for such change or construction unless and until he has received such a certificate of approval.
The failure of the Commission to act upon a completed application within 45 days from the date the completed application was filed shall be deemed to constitute automatic approval of the proposed changes unless an extension of this forty-five-day period is agreed mutually by the applicant and the Commission or the application has been withdrawn.
Nothing in this chapter shall be taken or construed to prevent routine maintenance, customary farming operations, or landscaping which will have no material effect on the historic, archeological, or architectural significance of a designated site, structure, or district. Nothing in this chapter affects the right to complete any work covered by a permit or authorization issued prior to the effective date of this chapter.
Any person or persons, firm or corporation aggrieved by a decision of the Commission shall have the right of appeal concerning such decision to the Circuit Court of Carroll County.
[Amended 9-27-2004 by Ord. No. 247]
Any violation of this chapter shall constitute a municipal infraction. Each day the violation occurs shall constitute a separate offense. The penalties for such municipal infraction shall be as follows:
Third and subsequent offenses: A third and all subsequent violations shall constitute a Class E municipal infraction as provided in Chapter 1, Article I, Municipal Infractions. The imposition of penalties shall be subject to a waiver if the violator can show compliance with this chapter within 45 days of the violation of this chapter.
In addition to any other remedies and penalties, upon violation of this chapter, the Town, the Zoning Administrator, the Commission or the Board of Zoning Appeals shall have the authority to institute an appropriate action to prevent, enjoin, abate or remove such violation.