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Procedure for Obtaining a Certificate of Appropriateness for Exterior Renovation and Alterations

Designated Landmarks

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558.

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions.

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design.

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month (a copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered.

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project.

At the meeting the Landmarks Commission determines whether or not the proposed work is compatible with the historic qualities of the building and the surrounding district.  If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this.

 

Mansion Hill Historic District

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558.

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; residing with clapboard, vinyl or aluminum that will mimic the look of the original siding and will not destroy decorative details; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions.

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design.

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month (a copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered.

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project.

At the meeting the Landmarks Commission determines whether or not the proposed work is compatible with the historic qualities of the building and the surrounding district.  If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this.

 

Third Lake Ridge Historic District

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558. 

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; residing with clapboard, vinyl or aluminum that will mimic the look of the original siding and will not destroy decorative details; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions. 

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design. 

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month (a copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered.  There is no fee for Landmarks Commission review.

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project. 

If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this. 

The criteria for the Third Lake Ridge are as follows (from Sec. 33.01(11)(e), (g) and (i) of the Madison General Ordinances): 

(e)        Guideline Criteria for Exterior Alteration in the Third Lake Ridge Historic District - Parcels Zoned for Manufacturing Use. 

            Alterations of the height of any existing structure shall be visually compatible with the buildings and environment within its visually related area. 

(g)        Guideline Criteria for Exterior Alteration in the Third Lake Ridge Historic District - Parcels Zoned for Commercial Use. 

1.   Alterations of the height of any existing structure shall be visually compatible with the buildings and environment within its visually related area.

2.   Alterations of the street fašade(s) of any existing structure shall retain the original or existing historical rhythm of solids and voids.

3.   Alterations of the street fašade(s) of any existing structure shall retain the original or existing historical materials.

4.   Alterations of the roof of any existing structure shall retain its existing historical appearance. 

(i)        Guideline Criteria for Exterior Alteration in the Third Lake Ridge Historic District - Parcels Zoned for Residential Use. 

1.   Alteration of any existing structure shall be evaluated according to all criteria listed in Sec. 33.01(11)(g) [see above].

2.   Alteration of the surface material, pattern and texture in the fašade(s) of any existing structures shall be compatible with the original or existing historical finishes.

3.   Alteration of any existing structure shall retain or be compatible with the original or existing historical rhythm of masses and spaces.

4.   Alteration of any existing structure shall retain the existing historical landscape plan or shall develop a new plan which is compatible with the plans of the buildings and environment within its visually related area.

5.   Alteration of the street fašade(s) of any existing structure shall retain the original or existing historical proportional relationships of door sizes to window sizes.

 

University Heights Historic District

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558. 

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; residing with clapboard, vinyl or aluminum that will mimic the look of the original siding and will not destroy decorative details; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions. 

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design. 

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month.  A copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered. 

Note:  In University Heights a proposal for an enclosed addition (i.e. - not porches or decks) over 100 square feet requires a public hearing.  This means that the request must be submitted three weeks before the meeting to allow time for notification of surrounding residents.  

There is no fee for Landmarks Commission review. 

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project. 

If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this. 

The criteria for University Heights are as follows (see Madison General Ordinances Sec. 33.01(12)(d) and (e)). 

(d)        Criteria for the Review of Additions, Exterior Alterations and Repairs in R2 and R4A Zoning Districts 

1.   Height. All additions shall be no higher than the existing building; however, if the existing building is already a nonconforming one, no addition shall be made thereto except in accordance with Section 28.05(3)(c) of the Madison General Ordinances [Sec. 28 is the Zoning Code]. Roof additions resulting in an increased building volume are prohibited unless they meet the standards in Section 33.01(12)(d)7 [see below] and are permitted under Chapter 28 of the Madison General Ordinances, or approved as a variance pursuant to Sections 28.08(2)(e) and 28.12(8)(d) or approved as a conditional use or as part of a planned residential development in accordance with Section 28.085(e).

2.   Second Exit Platforms and Fire Escapes. Second exit platforms and fire escapes shall be invisible from the street, wherever possible, and shall be of a plain and unobtrusive design in all cases. In instances where an automatic combustion products detection and alarm system is permitted as an alternative to second exits pursuant to Section 28.08(2)(e) of the Madison General Ordinances, use of such a system shall be mandatory.

3.   Solar Apparatus. Passive and active solar apparatus are prohibited unless the Landmarks Commission determines that they are as unobtrusive as possible and that their use does not detract from the architectural integrity of the building provided, however, that solar apparatus will not be permitted where the device hides from street view significant architectural features of the building or neighboring buildings, where its installation requires the loss of significant architectural features or where the device is of such a large scale that it becomes a major feature of the design.

4.   Repairs. Materials used in exterior repairs shall duplicate the original building materials in texture and appearance, unless the Landmarks Commission approves duplication of the existing building materials where the existing building materials differ from the original. Repairs using materials that exactly duplicate the original in composition are encouraged.

5.    Restoration. Projects that will restore the appearance of a building or structure to its original appearance are encouraged and will be approved by the Landmarks Commission if such projects are documented by photographs, architectural or archeological research or other suitable evidence.

6.   Re-Siding. Re-siding with aluminum or vinyl that replaces or covers clapboards or non-original siding on buildings originally sided with clapboards will be approved by the Landmarks Commission provided that the new siding imitates the width of the original clapboard siding to within one (1) inch and provided further that all architectural details including, but not limited to, window trim, wood cornices and ornament either remain uncovered or are duplicated exactly in appearance. Where more than one layer of siding exists on the building, all layers except the first must be removed before new siding is applied. If insulation is applied under the new siding, all trim must be built up so that it projects from the new siding to the same extend it did with the original siding.

7.   Additions Visible from the Street and Alterations to Street Fašades. Additions visible from the street, including additions to the top of buildings or structures, and alterations to street fašades shall be compatible with the existing building in architectural design, scale, color, texture, proportion of solids to voids and proportion of widths to heights of doors and windows. Materials used in such alterations and additions shall duplicate in texture and appearance, and architectural details used therein shall duplicate in design, the materials and details used in the original construction of the existing building or of other buildings in University Heights of similar materials, age and architectural style, unless the Landmarks Commission approves duplication of the texture and appearance of materials and the design of architectural details used in the existing building where the existing building materials and architectural details differ from the original. Additions and exterior alterations that exactly duplicate the original materials in composition are encouraged. Additions or exterior alterations that destroy significant architectural features are prohibited. Side additions shall not detract from the design composition of the original fašade.

8.   Additions and Exterior Alterations Not Visible from the Street. Additions and exterior alterations that are not visible from any streets contiguous to the lot lines upon which the building or structure is located will be approved by the Landmarks Commission if their design is compatible with the scale of the existing building and, further, if the materials used are compatible with the existing materials in texture, color, and architectural details. Additions and alterations shall harmonize with the architectural design of the building rather than contrast with it.

9.   Roof Shape. The roof shape of the front of a building or structure shall not be altered except to restore it to the original documentable appearance or to add a dormer or dormers in a location and shape compatible with the architectural design of the building and similar in location and shape to original dormers on buildings of the same vintage and style within the district. Alterations of the roof shape of the sides or back of a building or structure shall be visually compatible with the architectural design of the existing building.

10.  Roof Material.

a.    If the existing roof of a building or structure is tile, slate, or other material that is original to the building or structure and/or contributes to its historic character all repairs thereto shall be made using the same materials. In addition, in all cases any such roof must be repaired rather than replaced, unless the documented cost of repair exceeds the documented cost of reproofing with a substitute material that approximates the appearance of the original roofing material as closely as possible, in which case reproofing with a material that approximates the appearance of the original roofing material as closely as possible will be approved by the Landmarks Commission.

b.   If the existing roofing material is asphalt shingles, sawn wood shingles or a non-historic material, such as fiberglass, all repairs shall match in appearance the existing roof material; however, if any such roof is covered or replaced, reproofing must be done using rectangular sawn wood shingles or rectangular shingles that are similar in width, thickness and apparent length to sawn wood shingles, for example, 3-in-1 tab asphalt shingles. Modern style shingles, such as thick wood shakes, dutch lap, French method and interlock shingles, that are incompatible with the historic character of the district are prohibited.

c.   Rolled roofing, tar and gravel and other similar roofing materials are prohibited except that such materials may be used on flat or slightly sloped roofs which are not visible from the ground.

11.  Parking Lots. No new parking lots will be approved unless they are accessory to and on the same zoning lot as a commercial building or multiple-family dwelling. 

(e)        Criteria for the Review of Additions, Exterior Alterations and Repairs in the R4, R5, R6, C1, C2 and OR Zoning Districts. 

1.   Height. All additions shall be no higher than the existing building; however, if the existing building is already a nonconforming one no addition shall be made thereto except in accordance with Section 28.05(3)(c) of the Madison General Ordinances [the Zoning Code]. In addition, all additions, including additions to the top of a building or structure, shall conform to the height restrictions for the zoning district in which the building or structure is located.

2.   Additions and Alterations. Alterations and additions shall be compatible in scale, materials, and texture with the existing building or structure.

3.   Repairs. Materials used in repairs shall harmonize with the existing materials in texture, color, and architectural detail.

4.   Re-Siding. The criteria for the review of residing are the same as the criteria for review of residing in the R2 and R4A zoning districts set forth in Section 33.01(12)(d)6. of the Madison General Ordinances [see above].

5.    Roof Shape. Roof alterations to provide additional windows, headroom or area are prohibited unless permitted under Chapter 28 of the Madison General Ordinances or otherwise approved pursuant thereto as a variance or as part of a conditional use. In addition, all roof alterations shall be visually compatible with the architectural design of the building or structure.

6.    Roof Materials. All repairs shall match in appearance the existing roofing materials; however, when a roof is covered or replaced, roofing materials shall duplicate as closely as practicable the appearance of the original materials. Thick wood shakes, french method, interlock and dutch lap shingles are prohibited. Rolled roofing, tar and gravel and other similar roof materials are also prohibited except on flat or slightly sloped roofs which are not visible from the street.

7.      Parking Lots. No new parking lots will be approved unless they are accessory to and on the same zoning lot as a commercial building or multiple-family dwelling.

 

Marquette Bungalows Historic District

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558. 

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; residing with clapboard, vinyl or aluminum that will mimic the look of the original siding and will not destroy decorative details; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions. 

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design. 

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month (a copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered.  There is no fee for Landmarks Commission review. 

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project. 

If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this. 

The criteria for the Marquette Bungalows are as follows (see Madison General Ordinances Sec. 33.01(13)(d)). 

(d)        Criteria for the Review of Additions, Exterior Alterations and Repairs. All additions, exterior alterations and repairs must be compatible with the historic character of the house and the Marquette Bungalows Historic District.  

1.   Re-Siding. Re-siding with aluminum or vinyl that replaces or covers clapboards or non-original siding on buildings originally sided with clapboards will be approved by the Landmarks Commission provided that the new siding imitates the width of the original clapboard siding to within one inch and provided further that all architectural details including, but not limited to, window trim, wood cornices and other ornament either remain uncovered or are duplicated exactly in appearance. All trim must continue to project out beyond the plane of the siding. Brick, stucco, and half-timber detailing shall match the original in appearance. Original wood shingle siding should be repaired or replaced to match the original in appearance, whenever possible; however, covering wood shingles with double-four vinyl or aluminum may be approved. 

2.   Roof Materials. Reroofing shall be done with asphalt shingles, fiberglass shingles or other rectangular composition shingle similar in appearance to 3-in-1 tab asphalt shingles. Sawn wood shingles may also be approved. Modern style shingles, such as thick wood shakes, Dutch lap, French method and interlock shingles are incompatible with the historic character of the district and are prohibited. Vents shall be located as inconspicuously as possible and shall be similar in color to the color of the roof. Rolled roofing, tar and gravel and other similar roofing materials are prohibited except that such materials may be used on flat or slightly sloped roofs which are not visible from the ground. 

3.   Skylights. Skylights on street-facing roof slopes are prohibited. Skylights may be permitted on side roof slopes provided the front edge of the skylight is at least 10 feet back from the front edge of the main roof. Skylights on any roof area not visible from the street may be permitted. The design should be as simple as possible, of the flat type (not bubble) and painted to blend with the color of the roof. 

4.   Dormers and Other Roof Alterations. New dormers shall be greater than three (3) feet from the front edge of the roof. New dormers shall match original dormers on the house (or original dormers on similar houses in the district) in roof shape and material, width of overhang, siding, window design and trim details. The ridge line of a new dormer shall not extend above the ridge line of the main roof of the house. The dormer walls shall not extend beyond the line of the main house wall below. Shed dormers behind existing dormers or gables on non-street sides of the house may be approved provided that the roof material, siding, window design and trim details match the original features of the house. Other roof alterations shall be compatible with the roof shape and other features of the house, such as siding and trim details, and shall not extend above the ridge line of the house. 

5.   Chimneys. The exterior appearance of chimneys visible from the street shall be maintained in good repair. The removal of the exterior portions of such chimneys is prohibited. Chimneys not visible from the street may be removed. New chimneys shall be constructed of brick to match as closely as possible the brick on the house, or if there is no brick on the house, chimneys may be made of brick similar in dimensions and color to brick on other houses in the neighborhood. New chimneys not visible from the street may also be constructed of metal or other non-historic material. 

6.      Windows and Doors.

a.   General Criteria. The original appearance of leaded glass and other non-rectangular decorative windows (e.g., curved top windows) on any facade of the house shall be retained. Replacement of such windows shall duplicate the original in size, configuration and appearance. Picture windows are prohibited. Trim on new or remodeled windows shall match the original window trim on the house. 

b.   Street Facades. Windows and doors on the front or street facade of the house and on side faces within 10 feet of the front facade of the house shall retain their original or existing appearance, including true muntins where they exist. Replacement windows and doors may be approved if they match the original appearance. 

c.    Non-Street Side Facades. Retention of the original appearance of windows and doors on the sides of the house is encouraged. However, if replacement or new windows are proposed, the muntin design of the original windows on the house may either be replicated with true-divided lights or with exterior or interior applied grids or with grids applied between the panes of glass. New windows shall either be casement windows or double-hung windows. Sash on new windows over four (4) feet square shall be divided by muntins or mullions. Bay windows may be approved if they have sides perpendicular to the wall and if they do not extend beyond the eaves of the roof. 

d.   Rear Facade. Replacement, remodeling or installation of new doors and windows on the rear facade will not be restricted except as discussed under "General Criteria" above. 

7.   Porches. Porches and stairway railings shall match the original railings in appearance wherever possible. Wrought iron railings with vertical balusters at least one-half inch in width, wood railings with vertical square balusters spaced no more than three (3) inches apart, and solid wall railings covered in siding to match the house will be approved. Other designs may be permitted if they blend with the character of the house and the district. Porches may be enclosed with windows or screens provided that new windows be casements or double-hung units similar in proportion to other windows on the house. Steps may be constructed of wood, concrete or brick. If wood is used, steps shall have risers and be enclosed on the sides by lattice or a wing wall. Rear yard decks shall have a railing as described above, shall have the underside screened by lattice or evergreen shrubs, and all parts of the deck, except the flooring and steps, shall be painted or opaque-stained in a color to blend with the colors on the house. 

8.   Solar Apparatus. Solar apparatus is not compatible with the historic character of the district and is prohibited. 

9.   Second Exits. Second exit platforms and stairways shall be as unobtrusive as possible. No second exit platforms or stairways shall be permitted on the front facade of a house. When possible, second exit stairways shall be provided on the interior of the building. When this is not possible, they shall be added onto the rear section of the house. Railings and design shall follow the railing and deck criteria listed under "Porches" above. 

10.  Additions and Other Alterations. New additions on the front of the house are prohibited. Additions on the sides or rear shall be permitted if they are compatible with the house in architectural design, scale, color, texture, proportion of solids to voids and proportion of widths to heights of doors and windows. Materials and architectural details used in additions and alterations shall duplicate in texture, appearance, and design, the materials and details used in the original construction of the house or of other houses in the district. The Landmarks Commission may approve an exception to this policy where the existing building materials and architectural details differ from the original. Additions and exterior alterations that exactly duplicate the original materials in composition are encouraged. Additions or exterior alterations that destroy significant architectural features are prohibited. Side additions shall not detract from the design composition of the original facade. 

11.  Foundations. The original or existing finish on the foundation shall be retained. Brick or stone shall not be covered with a cementitious or other surface. Foundation insulation shall be applied only to the interior. Basement windows may be removed provided that the space is filled with a material to match as closely as possible the appearance of the surrounding foundation and provided that the new material is inset at least one inch from the plane of the wall. 

12.  Tuckpointing and Brick Repair. Mortar and other materials used in brick repair shall match the original in color, hardness and appearance. Brick shall not be painted. 

13.  Storm Windows and Doors. Storm windows and doors shall be enameled, painted or otherwise coated with a colored surface; raw aluminum is prohibited. Storm door designs of wood and glass to match the original design on the house or on similar houses in the district is encouraged. Storm doors of simple design with no stylistic references (e.g., colonial cross-bars) may also be used. Storm doors with metal grilles may be approved provided that they blend with the style of the house.

  

First Settlement Historic District

The property owner should first ascertain if the project will require a permit. In general, repair projects that cost under $500.00; storm doors, screens and storm windows; painting; driveways and sidewalks; fences and landscaping (not including decks or other structures) do not require a building permit. Alterations of any cost and all other work does require a permit.  If in doubt, call the Building Inspection Unit at 266-6558. 

Second, the owner should determine if the project is of a type that can be approved by the Landmarks Commission's designees, who are staff people at the Department of Planning and Development. These projects include changes that will not alter the appearance of the building; restoration to an earlier, documentable appearance; most re-roofings; residing with clapboard, vinyl or aluminum that will mimic the look of the original siding and will not destroy decorative details; and gutters and downspouts that do not have a raw metal finish. If the project falls into one of these categories, call the Landmarks Commission staff at 266-6552, who will then write an approval memo to the Building Inspection Unit so there will be no delay in the issuance of the building permit. The Landmarks Commission must review all other projects, including such things as windows that do not match the existing, new dormers, porch rails, decks and additions. 

The Landmarks Commission staff is happy to consult with property owners on appropriate design alternatives, solutions to maintenance problems, etc. If you plan a large-scale project, you may wish to have the Landmarks Commission staff look at rough sketches or discuss ideas with you prior to the development of the final design. 

Generally speaking the Landmarks Commission meets at 4:30 in the afternoon on two Mondays a month (a copy of the schedule can be found at http://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meetingDates/Landmarks.htm.  In order for the Landmarks Commission to consider a project, drawings and/or other materials that clearly explain what the project will look like when it is done (12 copies no larger than 11" x 17") should be submitted to the Landmarks Commission staff no later than fourteen days before the meeting at which you wish your project to be considered  

It is best for the property owner and/or the designer or contractor to be present at the meeting to answer questions. If, for some reason, the Landmarks Commission does not approve of a particular proposal, a compromise often can be developed at the same meeting, but only if the owner or a representative is there to discuss the project. 

If the project is approved, the building permit can be issued as early as the next morning. If the Landmarks Commission denies a "certificate of appropriateness" for a project, the commission and its staff will be happy to assist the owner in developing a plan that will achieve the property owner's goals and be sympathetic with the historic character of the building or neighborhood. If no agreement can be reached, the Landmarks Commission's decision can be appealed to the Common Council. So far, no property owner has felt the need to do this. 

The criteria for the First Settlement are as follows (from Sec. 33.01(14)(d) of the Madison General Ordinances): 

d)         Criteria for the Review of Additions, Exterior Alterations and Repairs. All additions, exterior alterations and repairs must be compatible with the historic character of the building and the First Settlement Historic District. The criteria listed below are intended to maintain an historically accurate appearance. Modern materials that do not meet the exact requirements of the criteria but which duplicate the historic appearance may be considered on an individual basis in the variance procedure listed in Section 33.01(15) below. 

1.   Porches. Porches that are original to the building, or that pre-date 1930 and blend with the historic character of the building, shall be retained, rehabilitated or rebuilt to match the original in all details. Porches on street facades may be enclosed with wood-framed screens, on the condition that the railing must be retained or restored in a design compatible with the historic character of the building. Porches on street facades shall not be enclosed as a heated space. If a porch is on a street facade and the owner can demonstrate to the Landmarks Commission that it is beyond repair, then a new porch must be constructed in its place. Construction of new porches to approximate the dimensions of original porches is encouraged. 

All porches shall present a finished appearance, e.g., all floor joists shall be hidden from view and all porches shall be finished with ceilings and frieze boards. Porch ceilings shall have the appearance of narrow beaded boards, unless another original material is approved by the Landmarks Commission. First floor porch flooring shall be tongue-in-groove boards; carpeting and two-by-four decking are prohibited. All wood on exterior porches, except flooring and stair treads, shall be painted or opaque stained. 

All railings on porches shall be constructed of wood, or another material that duplicates the appearance of wood, with top and bottom rails. Bottom rails shall be raised above the floor level and shall be no higher than three and one-half (3 1/2) inches from the floor. All balusters on porch railings shall be square posts, unless the owner can demonstrate to the Landmarks Commission that a different design is original to the building. If the building code requires a forty-two (42) inch high railing, the lower portion of the railing may be solid framed panels. Railings on stairways may be either wood to match the railings on the porch or wrought iron with one-by-one plain vertical balusters. Twisted or other decorative wrought iron is prohibited. All balusters shall be constructed such that a four (4) inch ball may not pass through the railing at any point. All balusters shall be located in between the top and bottom rail and shall not extend across the face of either. Siding on porch rails is prohibited unless the existing rail is sided. Porch posts shall be trimmed with decorative molding at the top and bottom of the posts. 

All porches and stairways shall be enclosed between the frieze under the first floor and the ground with a framed lattice of criss-cross design, narrow vertical boards or other openwork design. The lattice shall be designed such that a three (3) inch ball could not pass through any portion of the lattice. All stairways shall have solid wood risers. 

Porches on street facades may be enclosed by storm windows. Storm windows on porches shall have the appearance of double-hung windows, with or without a transom, and shall fill the space between the top of the railing and the upper frieze board. When porches are enclosed, the railing area underneath may be filled in with solid framed panels. Porches on street facades shall not be enclosed as a four-season heated space. 

2.   Decks. Decks in rear yards will be approved by the Landmarks Commission provided that the design complies with Par. 1., except that tongue-in-groove flooring is not required. Decks in front and side yards may be permitted if they are not replacing an entrance porch, do not detract from the historic character of the building and neighborhood, and if they comply with Par.1.

3.   Accessibility Ramps. It is the intent of this section to permit accessibility ramps wherever possible, especially when required by ADA guidelines. Accessibility ramps shall be as inconspicuous as possible. Landscape screening shall be provided where possible. The details of such ramps shall conform to the guidelines for porches in Par. 1.

4.   Windows. On the front facade and on side facades within ten (10) feet of the front facade, all original windows or pre-1930 windows that are compatible with the historic character of the building shall retain their existing historic size, appearance, and trim detail. If any of the original windows or pre-1930 windows that are compatible with the historic character of the building have true divided lights (i.e., with small panes of glass between muntin bars), replacement sash shall duplicate the existing appearance and have true divided lights. If windows have been altered in the past, restoration to the original appearance is encouraged. On side facades not within ten (10) feet of the front facade and on rear facades of the building, the sills of original windows or pre-1930 windows that are compatible with the historic character of the building may be raised to serve bathrooms and kitchens. In other respects, the design shall duplicate the original appearance of the existing window. On side facades more than ten (10) feet from the front facade and on rear facades, new windows in locations where no window previously existed may be approved, provided they retain a similar ratio of height to width as original windows on the building, are the same type of window as others on the building (e.g., double-hung or casement), and are trimmed and finished to match the appearance of the other windows.

5.   Entrance Doors. If the entrance door is original or is pre-1930 and blends with the historic character of the building, it should be retained unless the owner can demonstrate to the Landmarks Commission that it is beyond repair. Metal doors may be approved, provided they blend with the historic appearance of the building. Unpaneled, modern-style doors, and doors with a fake wood grain are prohibited. All doors shall be painted or varnished.

6.   Double or Multiple Doors. Double or multiple doors, such as doors leading onto patios or decks, may be permitted, provided they have frames similar to full view doors. Raw aluminum or other metallic finishes are prohibited. Patio doors shall be painted or finished with a material that resembles a painted finish. Such doors on street facades shall be hinged doors, rather than sliding doors.

7.   Storm Windows and Doors. Storm windows and doors shall be enameled, painted or otherwise coated with a colored surface to resemble a painted surface. Raw aluminum or other metallic finishes on storm windows and doors are prohibited. Painted or varnished storm doors of wood and glass to match the original design on the building or on similar buildings in the district are encouraged. Storm doors of simple design with no stylistic references may be used. Full view storm doors will be permitted. Storm doors with metal grills are prohibited.

8.   Skylights. Skylights on the roof slope over the main street facade are prohibited unless not visible from the street. Skylights may be permitted on rear roof slopes and on side roof slopes, provided the front edge of the skylight is at least ten feet back from the front edge of the main roof and provided that the skylight is not so obtrusive as to detract from the general appearance of the building. Skylights on any roof area not visible from the ground will be permitted. The design of new skylights shall be as simple as possible, of the flat (not bubble) type, and finished to blend with the color of the roof.

9.   Roof Materials. Reroofing shall be done with asphalt. Fiberglass or other rectangular composition shingles similar in appearance to 3-in-1- tab asphalt shingles. Sawn wood shingles also may be approved. Modern style shingles such as thick wood shakes, Dutch lap, French method, and interlock shingles are prohibited. Vents shall be located as inconspicuously as possible and shall be similar in color to the color of the roof. Rolled roofing, tar-and-gravel, rubberized membranes, and other similar roofing materials are prohibited, except that such materials may be used on flat or slightly sloped roofs that are not visible from the ground.

10.  Dormers and Other Roof Alterations. New dormers shall match the appearance of original dormers on the building in roof shape and material, width of overhang, siding, window design, and trim details whenever feasible. If the original roof shape is not practical, another shape may be approved, provided that it does not detract from the historic character of the building or the neighborhood. New dormers shall be no less than twelve (12) feet from the front edge of the roof. The ridge line of a new dormer shall not extend above the ridge line of the main roof of the building unless such higher roof line is not visible from the ground. Shed dormers behind existing dormers or gables on non-street sides of the building may be approved, provided that the roof material, siding, window design and trim details match the original features of the building. Other roof alterations shall be compatible with the roof shape and other historic features of the building, such as siding and trim details, and shall not extend above the ridge line of the building unless such extension is not visible from the ground.

11.  Chimneys. The exterior appearance of original or pre-1930 chimneys visible from the street shall be maintained in good repair. The removal of the exterior portions of such chimneys is prohibited. Chimneys not visible from the street may be removed. New chimneys shall be constructed of brick, stone, stucco, or other compatible material. Metal chimneys are prohibited.

12.  Siding. Original wood siding or pre-1930 siding that blends with the historic character of the building shall be retained and restored as necessary, except that if the owner can demonstrate to the Landmarks Commission that the original siding is beyond repair, it may be replaced with wood, composite wood, or concrete clapboard siding to match the original or existing pre-1930 appearance. Restoration of original wood decorative details is encouraged. Soffits may be replaced or sided with wood or artificial materials, provided the appearance of the proposed material matches as closely as possible the original appearance. Original brick, stone and stucco siding shall be retained. Installation of artificial siding on such buildings is prohibited. Painting of unpainted brick is prohibited. Mortar and other materials used in brick repair shall match the original in color, hardness, and appearance.

13.  Foundations. All original foundation masonry, such as brick, stone, or rusticated concrete block, shall be retained unless the owner can demonstrate to the Commission that significant repairs are required, in which case replacement with materials to duplicate the original appearance is encouraged. If duplicating the original appearance is not practical, other materials may be approved, provided they blend with the historic character of the building and the district.

14.  Additions. New additions on the front of the building are prohibited, except for open porches. Additions on the sides or rear shall be permitted if they are compatible with the building in architectural design, scale, color, texture, proportion of solids to voids, and proportion of widths to heights of doors and windows. Additions and exterior alterations that exactly duplicate the original materials in composition are encouraged. Additions or exterior alterations that destroy significant architectural features are prohibited. Side additions shall not detract from the design composition of the main facade. Siding on new additions shall be the same as the building, unless the building is masonry, in which case narrow-gauge clapboards will be permitted. Foundation material on new additions shall duplicate the original foundation material whenever practical. Other foundation materials may also be permitted, provided they do not detract from the historic character of the building.

15.  Fire Escapes and Rescue Platforms. Fire escapes and rescue platforms shall be located such that they are as unobtrusive from the street as possible. No fire escapes or rescue platforms shall be permitted on the front facade of a building unless the owner can demonstrate to the Landmarks Commission that no other location is practical. The design of fire escapes and rescue platforms shall comply with the requirements of Par. 1., except that balusters on fire escapes and second exit platforms may be metal with one-by-one plain vertical balusters, painted to blend with the colors of the house. Twisted or other decorative wrought iron is prohibited.

16.  Lighting Fixtures. Lighting fixtures that are visible from the street shall be of a design that is compatible with the historic appearance of the building.

17.  Permanently Installed Air Conditioners. Permanently installed air conditioners shall be as inconspicuous as possible. Ground air conditioners shall be screened with landscaping where possible. 

18.  Shutters. The installation of new shutters requires approval of the Landmarks Commission. Shutters will be permitted, provided they are compatible with the historic character of the building and are of a size that, if the shutters were workable, would cover the window opening.

19.  Repairs. Repairs to buildings shall either match the existing or the original appearance. Restoration to the original appearance is encouraged.

20.  Alterations to Post-1930 Buildings. Alterations of buildings that post-date 1930 shall be compatible with the original character of the building and shall not detract from the historic character of older buildings in the district. Alterations that bring the building into compliance with the regulations of this section regarding siding, decks, foundations, porches, the proportion of windows and doors, and the proportion of solids to voids of the street facades of such buildings are encouraged. It is not the intent of this ordinance to create fake historic buildings, but to allow modern style buildings to retain their essential style while still blending with the appearance of historic buildings in the district.

CONTACT:
City of Madison
Department of Planning & Community & Economic Development
608-266-4635