Wilmington Design Standards for Historic Districts and Landmarks

6 5 4 3 2 1 Introduction Design Standards WILMINGTON HISTORIC DISTRICTS AND LANDMARKS 18 7 The bene fi ts of living in one of Wilmington’s locally designated historic districts are many. Residents enjoy living in interesting and historically signi fi cant housing which has stable and increasing property values. They have the privilege of receiving city approved design guidance and protection from destructive unplanned growth. Accompanying these bene fi ts and privilege is the responsibility to help maintain the distinctive character of the historic districts. At its best, historic preservation is more than preserving individual buildings; it is about preserving neighborhoods. Therefore, all design decisions about individual properties should be made in conjunction with what is appropriate for the surrounding properties and the district as a whole. The purpose of the Historic Preservation Commission is to protect the special character of Wilmington’s historic districts by preventing changes that are incongruous to the districts as a whole. This manual, prepared by the Historic Preservation Commission and city staff, provides standards which enable the Commission to act responsively and responsibly in reviewing design changes in the historic districts. It states the organizational framework within which the Commission must work. It identi fi es Wilmington’s historic districts and describes the review authority of the Commission in each district. It contains the local design standards which are used in conjunction with the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. All Commission decisions on design changes are based on this document and the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards. The Commission shall apply the design standards to assure that the construction, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, moving or demolition of buildings, structures, appurtenant fi xtures, outdoor advertising signs or other signi fi cant features of an historic landmark or in an historic district are congruous with the special character of the landmark or district. If it can be demonstrated that a standard is not appropriate for the applicant’s project, the Commission may fi nd that the standard does not apply. The Commission interprets and applies standards on a case-by- case basis, taking into consideration any evidence submitted. The Historic District Design Standards were prepared to assist individual property owners in preserving and maintaining their historic property and in planning exterior alterations to their property; to guide the Historic Preservation Commission in the review process; and to ensure that the special character of Wilmington’s historic districts is preserved and protected. Downtown Wilmington River Front Source: City of Wilmington 1.2 Introduction to the Wilmington Design Standards