The public hearing on the accessory dwelling unit ordinance at Planning Commission Tuesday was well-attended. As you may have heard, the motion was to deny the changes to the ordinance language. One of the sticking points was the inability to say whether a stipulation for a homeowner to be in residence on the property could be added to the ordinance legally (the thought being that without such a requirement it would incentivize landlords to add more rental units on one parcel.) Other potential issues such as requirements for minimum lot size to add ADUs or requirements for all residents to be related were also unable to be answered at the meeting. The ordinance still proceeds to City Council, sometime in May, before the ordinance can be declared officially dead.
Looking to expand your preservation knowledge? The National Trust is offering two upcoming webinar series in April and May. Discovering Our Ancestors and Preserving Historic Gravesites Webinar Series explores issues related to preserving cemeteries. Planning, Preservation, and Change Webinar Series explores planning and preservation issues and opportunities presented by future changes. Learn more and register at their website. There are also links to past webinars if you missed other topics of interest – check it out!
Located! Two of our sharp-eyed readers last week identified the mystery building as Belle Grove. We admit we were thrown off by the landscaping, but a copy of the image is also held at the Stewart Bell Jr. Archives, with the photographer listed as Allan Richardson. He took many a photograph at PHW events in the 1970s, and PHW partnered with Belle Grove on activities during this time, so we’re not surprised by the revelation or timing of the photographs, or that PHW has a copy. Thank you to Kristen and Margaretta for the identification!
Assorted Links: Our bookmark tab was looking a bit overgrown again, so we’d like to share some links to articles we found interesting.
Do you need help with alternatives to tearing down historic buildings? This is an archived version of the National Trust website from 2007 which had a number of useful publications and alternatives.
Partitioning the Landscape: The Fence in Eighteenth-Century Virginia From the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation comes this exploration of historic fence construction techniques.
Historic preservation and affordable housing are not mutually exclusive. This page, hosted by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, features a webinar on utilizing historic tax credit for affordable housing projects as well as supporting written documentation. (It is also a useful primer for anyone looking to utilize Federal Historic Tax Credit in a project, not just for affordable housing – many of the basic points are the same.)
Existing Buildings: The Elephant in the Room. “Existing buildings are a resource for growth. Every city and town in the nation has dozens, hundreds, even thousands of abandoned and partially occupied buildings.”
Two Simple Rules For Healthy Neighborhood Change: “1. No neighborhood can be exempt from change, and 2. No neighborhood should experience sudden, radical change.”
Ever wondered how we estimate walking tour distances? We use this site for a rough estimator.