[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Piermont 9-1-1981 by L.L. No. 5-1981. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Board of Trustees of the Village of Piermont hereby finds that:
There exist in the Village of Piermont places, sites, structures and buildings of special historic significance or places, sites, structures and buildings which, by reason of famous events, their antiquity or uniqueness of architectural construction and design, are of particular significance to the heritage of our Village, town, county, state and country.
The conservation, protection and preservation of such places, sites, structures and buildings is a public necessity in harmony with the Village plan and will promote the public health, safety and general welfare.
Now, therefore, the Board of Trustees of the Village of Piermont hereby declares that the purpose of this chapter is to accomplish the conservation, protection and preservation of such places, sites, structures and buildings.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any act or process which changes one or more of the exterior architectural features of a structure designated as a landmark or any structure or building in an historic district.
- A structure wholly or partially enclosed within exterior walls, or within exterior or party walls and a roof, affording shelter to persons, animals or property.
- EXTERIOR ARCHITECTURAL FEATURES
- The architectural style, design, general arrangement and components of all of the outer surfaces of any building or structure, including but not limited to the kind, color and texture of the building material and the type and style of all windows, doors, lights, signs and other fixtures appurtenant to said building or structure.
- HISTORIC DISTRICT
- Any area which contains places, sites, structures or buildings which have a special character and ambiance or historical value or aesthetic interest and which represent one or more periods or styles of architecture of an era of history and which cause such area to constitute a distinct section of the Village.
- Any place, structure or building of historical value or aesthetic interest by reason of its antiquity or uniqueness of architectural design or as part of the development, heritage or cultural characteristics of the Village, town, county, state or country.
- LANDMARK SITE
- A parcel, or part thereof, on which is situated a landmark, and any abutting parcel or part thereof constituting part of the premises on which the landmark is situated.
- Any assembly of materials forming a construction framed of component structural parts for occupancy or use, including buildings.
- STYLES OF ARCHITECTURE
- Style recognized by one of the following organizations:
- A. The National Register of Historic Places.
- B. The Historic American Buildings Survey.
- C. The Historic American Engineering Record, United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service.
- D. The Division for Historic Preservation, New York State Office of Parks and Recreation.
- E. The Rockland County Historical Society.
- F. The National Trust for Historic Preservation.
- G. The Society of Architectural Historians.
Any owner of property may request the designation of such property as a landmark site or historic district by submitting to the Village Board of Trustees a written request for such designation. In addition, the Village Board of Trustees may, on its own motion, initiate proceedings for the designation of publicly owned property as a landmark, landmark site or historic district.
In the event that the Village Board of Trustees decides to entertain an application for designation, notice shall be given by the Village Board of Trustees to the Building Inspector and to the owners of all property located within 200 feet of the exterior boundary lines of the subject parcel or parcels, and notice shall also be published in the official newspaper of the Village.
The Village Board of Trustees shall either approve or disapprove an application within 90 days after compliance with Subsection B of this section. The approval may limit itself to the proposed historic district or landmark site as described in the application or may include modifications thereof.
If the Village Board of Trustees disapproves the application, the proceedings with regard to the proposed historic district, landmark or landmark site shall terminate. In the event that no decision is rendered within 90 days, the application shall be deemed disapproved. No application shall be renewed for a period of six months from the date of the initial filing. Notice of approval or disapproval shall be filed by the Village Board of Trustees with the Village Clerk and the Village Clerk shall mail such notice of approval or disapproval to the owners of the subject property and to the Building Inspector.
Upon receipt of notice that the Village Board of Trustees is considering a place, site, structure or building for designation as a landmark or landmark site or as part of an historic district, the Building Inspector shall not issue any permit for the demolition, alteration or improvement of said place, site, structure or building for a period of 120 days, unless prior to the expiration of said period there is a final determination by the Board of Trustees that said place, site, structure or building has not qualified as a landmark or landmark site or as part of an historic district. If, within said period, the Board of Trustees designates the property in question as a landmark site or as part of an historic district, no building permit shall be issued except pursuant to the next section of this chapter.
No structure, site, place or building designated as a landmark or landmark site nor any place, site, structure, building or property located wholly or partly within the boundaries of the historic district shall be constructed, altered, repaired, moved or demolished, except in compliance with the requirements set forth in this section.
The Village Board of Trustees shall review all plans for the moving, exterior construction, alteration or repair, landscaping or demolition of places, sites, structures or buildings designated as landmarks or landmark sites and all places, sites, structures or buildings wholly or partly within the boundaries of the historic district.
It shall be the duty of the Board of Trustees to review such plans before a building permit for the proposed activity is granted by the Building Inspector.
The Village Board of Trustees shall only review plans relating to the exterior features of a structure or building as are visible from the public way and shall have no jurisdiction to consider interior walls, arrangements or structures.
In reviewing the plans, the Village Board of Trustees shall give consideration to:
The historical and architectural value and significance of the building or structure and its relationship to the historic and architectural value of the surrounding area.
The general appropriateness of proposed exterior design, colors, arrangement, texture and materials.
Any other factors relating to aesthetic considerations which the Village Board of Trustees deems pertinent to the benefit of the Village of Piermont and to the historic significance of the structure or building and surrounding area.
Alterations, repairs and additions to buildings or structures located wholly or partly within the boundaries of the historic district or which are designated as landmarks shall be made consistent with the materials and styles of the particular architectural period of which said building or structure is characteristic.
New construction shall be consistent with the architectural styles of historic value in the historic district. However, the Village Board of Trustees may approve the construction of buildings or structures which have a dissimilar architectural style to that of the historic district if said Village Board deems it proper that the new construction will be in the best interests of the historic district.
Moving of buildings or structures designated as landmarks or located wholly or partly within the boundaries of the historic district may be allowed as an alternative to demolition.
Procedure for the review of plans.
Applications for a building permit to construct, alter, repair, move or demolish any place, site, structure or building designated as a landmark or any place, site, structure or building within or on the boundaries of the historic district shall be made to the Building Inspector pursuant to the laws and regulations of the Village of Piermont, except as provided hereafter. The application shall state that the property is a landmark and/or is located within or on the boundaries of the historic district. Plans shall be submitted showing the structure or building in question and also giving its relation to adjacent structures or buildings and the construction, alteration, repair, moving or demolition sought to be accomplished.
The Building Inspector shall transmit the application and the plans to the Village Board of Trustees.
The Village Board of Trustees shall then review the plans according to the provisions of this chapter. In reviewing the plans, the Village Board of Trustees may confer with the applicant or the authorized representative of the applicant concerning the building permit.
Grant of relief.
Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, if the applicant establishes to the satisfaction of the Village Board that there is unnecessary hardship in the strict application of the provisions of this chapter, a notice to proceed will be granted if the applicant provides proof that the following facts and conditions exist:
That the land or improvement in question cannot yield a reasonable return if the proposed construction, removal, alteration or demolition is not permitted; and
That the hardship of the applicant is due to unique circumstances; the proposed alteration, construction, removal or demolition will not alter the essential character of the area; and the hardship is the result of the application of the chapter and is not the result of any act or omission by the applicant.
Any relief granted shall be in conformance with the objectives of this chapter.
The Village Board of Trustees shall approve, modify and approve or disapprove such plans within 60 days after receiving the application and said plans and shall transmit a copy of its findings and determination to the Building Inspector and the applicant. If the Village Board of Trustees fails to act within 60 days of receipt of the application, the application shall be deemed to have been approved.
The Building Inspector shall not grant a building permit until such time as an application has been approved by the Village Board of Trustees or 60 days have elapsed from the date the application is received by the Village Board of Trustees.
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prevent ordinary maintenance or repair, with like materials of similar quality and color, of any place, site, structure or building designated as a landmark or landmark site or any property located wholly or partly within the boundaries of an historic district.
This section shall not apply in any case where the Building Inspector or any authorized Village enforcement agency orders or directs the construction, removal, alteration or demolition of any improvement on a landmark site or in an historic district for the purpose of remedying conditions determined to be unsafe or dangerous to the life, health or property of any person.
The Building Inspector shall be responsible for appropriate public identification of areas designated as landmarks, landmark sites and historic districts, and a current inventory of sites, structures and buildings designated by the Village Board of Trustees shall be maintained by the Village Clerk, and such inventory shall be deemed a part of this chapter. The Village Board of Trustees must approve the size, style, color, typography, material of construction and working of all privately owned signs identifying landmarks, landmark sites and properties within historic districts prior to installation, consistent with the provisions of § 126-5.