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List of Madison Landmarks
|| Madison Landmarks
The National Register of
The National Register is the nation's
list of historically significant cultural resources.
Maintained by the National Park Service, it
recognizes buildings, archeological sites and other
historic resources that are significant not only
nationally, but also regionally and locally as well.
As of this writing, there are over a dozen historic
districts and over 75 individual properties in
Madison listed on the National Register.
Please note that there are two types of
historic districts in Madison, the local districts
discussed elsewhere on this site and the National
Register districts discussed here.
Although some local districts are also listed
in the National Register, the program requirements
of the two programs are not the same and there are
some differences in boundaries.
The National Register
Historic Districts in Madison that contain
privately-owned buildings are (for a
map of each district, click on the district name):
Dayton Street (description)
East Wilson Street
Fourth Lake Ridge
West Lawn Heights
The major effect of listing on the
National Register is financial incentives in the
form of two kinds of tax credits:
one for the rehabilitation of
income-producing property and one for the
rehabilitation of single-family residences (see
In Madison, the Department of Planning
and Development has a policy that historic
preservation staff review building permits for
exterior work on National Register and National
Register historic district properties.
The staff review is intended to provide
advice if proposed work would harm the historic
character of the neighborhood, but the staff does
not have the authority to approve, deny or delay
Another effect of listing on the
National Register is a 30-day delay of demolition.
This delay is intended to give the State Historical
Society time to photograph the building before it is
demolished. If your property is listed on the
National Register or located in the National
Register Historic District, make sure to call the
Landmarks Commission staff at least 30 days before
you wish to demolish it. The City will take care of
notifying the Historical Society.
Finally, there is a bricks-and-mortar
preservation grant program set up for National
Register properties. It has not been funded for some
years and appropriations in the near future seem
For more information on the
National Register, call the Historic Preservation
Division of the State Historical Society at
264-6500, or visit their web site at http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/hp.
The alderperson for the
district or the property owner may appeal the
decision of the Landmarks Commission regarding
demolitions. The appeal must be filed within ten
days of the Landmarks Commission's decision.
The Common Council would then hold a public hearing
and could, by a two-thirds vote, overrule the
Landmarks Commission. In order to do this, the
Council would have to find that failure to grant a
"certificate of appropriateness" would preclude
any and all reasonable use of the property or that
it would cause serious hardship for the owner,
provided that the hardship was not self-created (for
instance, demolition by neglect).
Credits for the Rehabilitation of Single-Family
Owners of single-family houses that are
listed in the National Register of Historic Places
or that are determined by the State Historical
Society to be individually eligible for the State
Register of Historic Places or that contribute to
the historic character of a National Register
historic district, are eligible for a 25% state
income tax credit on the costs of rehabilitation.
There are several conditions for receiving
The total cost of the work must exceed
The plans for the project must be approved by
the State Historical Society as being compatible
with the historic character of the house prior to
the beginning of work.
There is no retro-active approval.
Eligible activities include:
and air conditioning
work, but not including new fixtures
work, including lead pipe replacement but not
including new fixtures
The owner must agree to have subsequent
alterations approved by the Wisconsin Historical
Society as being historically compatible for a
period of five years.
For more information see
the Wisconsin Historical Society's web site at http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/hp/architecture/tax_credit.asp.
Credits for Rehabilitation of Income-Producing
Owners of income-producing properties
are eligible for a 20% federal income tax credit on
the costs of rehabilitation and an additional 5%
state income tax credit.
In order to qualify, a building must be
listed on or eligible for the National Register of
Historic Places or must contribute to the historic
character of a National Register district.
The rehabilitation must be certified by the
National Park Service as being compatible with the
historic character of the building. In addition, the
costs of rehabilitation must be greater than the
value of the building as computed for income tax
For more information see
the Wisconsin Historical Society's web site at http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/hp/architecture/iptax_credit.asp.
City of Madison
Department of Planning
& Community &