Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Historic Accord: Bills to Form One Landmarks Agency Gaining

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Historic Accord: Bills to Form One Landmarks Agency Gaining

Article excerpt

St. Charles merchants and residents in historic areas are moving closer to embracing a series of bills that would consolidate regulatory authority over historic neighborhoods into one appointed board.

Council members Richard Baum, 6th Ward, and Rose Kasper, 8th Ward, will introduce six bills tonight eliminating several boards and replacing them with one agency, called the Historic Landmarks and Architectural Review Board.

The new board would be a nine-member body that would set guidelines and enforce regulations in such neighborhoods as the historic commercial areas on North and South Main Street as well as such residential areas as the Commons, Frenchtown and Midtown.

The members would serve three-year terms after appointment by the mayor and approval by the City Council.

The bills are being introduced after extensive discussions with historic-neighborhood groups in the past month.

The measures, if approved, would transfer the regulatory power of each of the neighborhood boards to the new city agency.

The proposals are intended to eliminate at least three city boards that deal with such matters, streamline the regulatory apparatus in historic areas and reduce the staff time devoted to these and other boards and commissions.

The new board would develop guidelines for the historic commercial and residential areas, keep a list of all properties declared by the city to be historic and develop guidelines for removal of landmarks.

There also are provisions designating the neighborhood groups governing North and South Main, Frenchtown, Midtown and the Commons as review groups. Such groups have the right to comment on matters n their neighborhoods and make recommendations for changes to developments in the areas.

But the groups would be largely advisory, and the bill contains a section urging applicants to "contact the affected historic district's recognized neighborhood review group and meet with the group concerning the application. …

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