Intro to Preservation

Frequently Asked Questions

How does living in an historic district affect zoning?

Zoning is a separate feature of a neighborhood’s character. The zoning dictates how large a building may be, its general shape and use. The LPC oversees all changes in an historic district but does not regulate contemporary use.

If my neighborhood or building is designated, will I be required to restore my property?

No. The LPC does not require restoration or force owners to return buildings to their original condition. The LPC only regulates proposed work on designated structures. It may, however, make recommendations for restorative treatment when other work is undertaken to the property.

What is an Historic District?

An historic district is an area of the city designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) that represents at least one period or style of architecture typical of one or more areas in the city’s history; as a result, the district has a distinct “sense of place.”

Having a neighborhood designated preserves the physical nature of the area and helps protect the area from out-of-scale and inappropriate development.

Local Voices

“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”

Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance

Local Voices

“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”

Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site

Local Voices

“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”

Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension

Local Voices

“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”

Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society