Please join our online campaign for the creation of a local historic district in Belmont on Change.org
help the cause
The Historic Belmont Foundation (HBF) requested the City Council of Belmont to look into creating a Local Historic District in early 2014. In October of 2014 they appointed a five person committee composed of opponents and advocates to explore this request. After almost a year of deliberation the committee submitted a report that the City Council in October of 2015 requesting a Neighborhood Conservation District zoning overlay primarily for residential areas that specifically does NOT prohibit or delay demolition of historic structures. This overlay district has not yet been defined and that process could take another year or longer and promises little in the way of historic preservation. Meanwhile, proposed changes to City wide zoning favor high density living calling for the "redevelopment of downtown". The concern of HBF is that development pressure will soon result in the loss of significant historic properties which currently require no demolition permit or waiting period. A local historic district designation or historic district zoning overlay (properly written) could offer real protection to historic properties as well as certain standards and requirements which would help ensure the future integrity of Belmont's architectural heritage.
Our goal is obtain at least 500 signatures before re-submitting this petition to the City Council and demanding action on this important issue. Please share this petition with your friends and neighbors that have a vested interest in seeing downtown Belmont's architectural heritage preserved for future generations. Every signature counts!
historic district benefits
A local historic district will boost property values, tourism, and increase historic preservation to maintain our town's heritage and architecture. It will also generate widespread economic appeal to our community, which will drive businesses and homeowners to locate in Belmont and increase jobs. Homeowners will benefit from increased property values, which will help revive our real estate market. A local historic district will help ensure the character and heritage of this special place is preserved for future generations. The City would benefit from the overall resulting increased tax revenue and increased tourism.
But, don't we already have a historic district?
Belmont has a National District but not a local district, which is being requested. The National District provides no protection for historic structures and only serves to provide renovation tax-credits to home owners. The good news is that the National District clearly defines the boundaries of historic downtown, which can be used in the creation of a local district. The two districts would greatly complement each other, yet serve separate and distinct functions.
What can I do to help?
First, please start by signing this petition. Second, consider speaking to a member of the City Council and letting them know you support this petition. Third, stay abreast of upcoming local preservation happenings by joining our mailing list at www.HistoricBelmontFoundation.org and like us on Facebook!