Local Government Preservation: Preservation where it counts

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Local Government Preservation: Preservation where it counts. Decision-making by local governments. Local governments are derivative, not sovereign governments. Who has the control of local governments, or the requirement to carry out the activities mandated by the state constitutions? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Local Government Preservation: Preservation where it counts

Local Government Preservation: Preservation where it countsDecision-making by local governmentsLocal governments are derivative, not sovereign governments. Who has the control of local governments, or the requirement to carry out the activities mandated by the state constitutions?

A state may mandate the use of Standards of Conduct either generally as in making reference to the Secretary of the Interiors Standards for Historic Preservationor specifically as with prescriptive Building Codes

General mandates are interpreted for local use by citizen boards with municipal employees organizing and answering informational requests from board membersSpecific prescriptive mandates are managed by municipal or county employees with training or expertise in the practices.The Planning Commission and the Planning DepartmentThe Planning Commission is the appointed by the city council to represent the interests of the city and to comment on projects within the city.The Planning Department is staffed with professional planners who provide technical backup for the planning commission and city council to make decisions.The Code Compliance officer is hired by the locality and then hires competent staff to review and approve or deny applications from citizens.What do we mean by urban and commercial core?Urban landscapes are defined by their buildings

Rural landscapes are defined by their open spaces

Commercial landscapes are defined by the access to the customers.Lots are primarily valued both for sale and taxation by the width of the frontage and only secondarily by their height and lot depth.Regulation as we shall see may also be focused upon frontage, not the depth of lot or the building height.

* Why are commercial cores so compact prior to the second quarter of the 20th century? (like block 66)Zoning and Downtown VitalityZoning is the most powerful tool that cities have.Zoning creates regions of commercial, industrial, and residential use. (Zones of transition are also possible.)By maintaining zones of activity, zoning impacts the income potential of zones.How would zoning create greater economic vitality downtown?1. Maintain the commercial area as a destination for residents. City government including courts. Post Office and federal government offices.2. Encourage businesses to stay in the downtown core.3. Encourage social center downtown with attractions. EntertainmentDining

Downtown Development AuthoritiesEncourage downtown projects may have some powers from the planning commission within the area of the downtown. The main activity of the DDA is financial encouragement.Development is encouraged through Tax Increment Financing, or TIF. The treasurer identifies the initial assessed value of property in the district. Any taxes generated by assessment higher than the initial assessed value go the DDA to support projects to improve the downtown. DDA may also sell municipal bonds. (This is the Central Park condition)

2. What kinds of projects? Usually infrastructure improvements, not grants to private owners.

Developers and property ownersThe decision to maintain or pay for change of urban buildings is often a complex mixture of strategies and tactics.Owners may, but often are not, the occupants of the property. Buildings of the past may have had multiple uses but may now have a single tenant and spaces above and below may not be rented, or even used.

Developers are looking for opportunities to invest and profit from opportunities.1. Property may be undervalued.2. Property may have experienced delayed maintenance.3. Not currently the highest and best useif rezoned more profitable activities may be possible.

Encouragement by local governments through indirect incentivesUnused and condemned historic buildings are sold for nominal amounts. Buildings that are vacant have no direct value. Properties can be sold for back taxes.2. Local tax credits while not high is often are significant in decision-making. 3. Local planning commissions use existing planning procedures to assist in reuse of historic properties. Important: Commercial property be viable for maintenance to be important for owners and repurposing to be possible.Rehabilitation is the active reuse of property. Conceptually a buildings structure and fabric are assets if retained.Local preservation requires infrastructure Local preservation requires infrastructure Property owners, builders, carpenters, masons, as well as administrators if the preservation work is to be of lasting quality.The attractiveness of rehabilitation when balanced against the energy costs of new construction. Case studies demonstrated that rehabilitation costs run one-quarter to one-third less than new construction. While true, this statistic conflicts with common sense information of builders. And it presupposes a work force with the skills to work within existing structures.1. Shoddy rehab is no more energy efficient than shoddy new construction.2. Rehabilitation has stabilized close-in suburbs and urban blocks making those areas some of the most competitive properties. The increase in interest in living in older homes and a return to downtown areas, has completely changed the attitudes of planners about the viability of urban areas.Changes in the demographics of home ownership created new enthusiasms for living downtown. People with alternate lifestyles, homosexuals, and couples who were professionals and did not have or wish to have children may see the inner city residences as beneficial.

Some common issues for local preservationStabilization of downtown areas has brought back developers anxious to build new buildings in the downtown area.

Displacement of minorities in downtown redevelopment.

Tourism as a blessing and curse. Revenue generating, but not evenly distributed.

The balance of aesthetics and history in preservation.

Preservation of religious sites as churches follow their congregants to suburbs.

Rising Sun Tavern-1815Points of TensionEmploy preservation professionals or to use volunteers. The adherence to revered stories about past actions or persons in the community may be indifferent to the architectural artifacts available to preserve.The preservation effort at the local level involves players with a mix of reasons to preserve. Preservation is a comfortable way to maintain the status quo of the social order. Local preservation may publically celebrate one's personal heritage (the descendent factor). Local preservation may provide business opportunities for individuals who participate.