Ashland preservation board hopes to spruce up homes in historic district
City Council passes legislation to create board
By Al Lawrence
New Journal correspondent
ASHLAND - Two residents of the Center Street Historic District said Wednesday they are ready for a historic preservation board to be appointed and get to work.
City Council passed legislation Tuesday to create the board, which will govern changes to houses in the district.
Gary Courtright, who lives at 919 Center Street, said he would like to see the preservation board appointed and minimum standards developed as soon as possible.
“That’s been my goal from the beginning,” he said. “Houses are crumbling because there have been no minimum standards since the district was established and I was disappointed they were not in this legislation.”
The five member board will:
- Develop guidelines for maintenance and exterior changes to district homes.
- Approve or deny certificates of appropriateness for projects.
- Issue fines for compliance violations.
- Consider requests for other historic designations.
Board members, who will be appointed by Mayor Bill Strine and approved by council, must include one architect, a preservation specialist, two property owners in the district and one member of the general public.
Rick McFrederick’s home at 818 Center St. Is one of only two on the west side of the district that are privately owned, single family residences. He said he was aware the ordinance was being considered, but has not give much thought to specific board goals.
“I’m glad to see it pass,” he said. “It adds stability to our street.”
McFrederick said Center Street is one of the few historic areas left in Ashland. He suggested the preservation board might want to consider part of Sandusky Street, just west of downtown, for some type of historic designation.
“It’s the next street in town with so much character,” McFrederick said.
Strine told council Tuesday he has talked with several people about serving on the preservation board, but did not give a timetable for making appointments.
Once the board and guidelines are in place, officials can apply for “certified local government” designation, which would make the city eligible to apply for federal funding for preservation projects.