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HPC Minutes

June 18, 2015

Historic Preservation Commission


Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Historic Preservation Commission met on Thursday, June 18, 2015 starting at 7 pm at the Council Chambers, 305 Gay Street, Cambridge, Maryland.

Commissioners Attending: Patricia Weichmann, Chairperson; Mike Russo, Vice-Chair: Sharon Smith, Ron Berman and Gaver Nichols

Other representatives or staff attending: LaSara Kinser, City Planner Assistant

Ms. Weichmann began the meeting and took a roll call of members in attendance.  She spoke to all those whom needed to be sworn in.

Previous minutes to be approved:

The minutes of May 21, 2015 a motion was made to approve them by Mr. Russo and seconded by Ms. Smith.  All approved and carried.

Consent Agenda:


Regular Agenda Items:

Case HPC#48 FY 2014-15, 116 Choptank Avenue: Ms. Martha Phillips-Patrick is applying to replace the fencing at the east side of her rear yard with traditional picket design, white vinyl fencing and to remove and replace their cinderblock side steps and railing.  The home was built in the 1900’s and there is no history of violations.

  • There is a tree in the back yard in the path of the fence and so the neighbor stated (also letter from them) to approve to use his property and to run the fence to the shed around the tree.
  • The fence would be 42 inches in height.
  • Would like to replace steps, add a landing and change the direction of the steps.
  • She would add railings also.

Ms. Kinser spoke that she administrative approved the steps being brick; they will be replaced with in-kind.

Mr. Nichols commented about the railing to match the front of the home, would she approve to these conditions.  There is not enough detail on this application of what is going to be used.  Ms. Phillips-Patrick spoke that she would get what is required of her; she was going to keep with the details of the fencing.

Motion to close the open discussion by Ms. Smith and seconded by Mr. Russo.  All in favor and carried.

Mr. Berman spoke that there was no real description of the railing.

A motion from Mr. Nichols to approve HPC#48 FY 2014-15, 116 Choptank Avenue, to allow the replacement of the fencing on the east side of the rear yard with the traditional picket design white vinyl fencing as described in the application.  Add the amendment that would allow the construction of the side entry condition 44”x44” as described in the application with either wood or vinyl.  The details are to be in keeping with the details found on the front porch, however we will allow the applicant to provide pickets on the side, to be either 1 ¼” or 1 ½”x1 ½” square, if found the round turned pickets, matching the front porch if the applicant chooses too.  Motion seconded by Mr. Russo.  All in favor and carried.

Case HPC#49 FY 2014-15, 116 Glenburn Avenue: Mr. Bridges and Mrs. Farrell request the approval to remove and replace their existing concrete steps. He hopes to replace with wooden steps that are similar to 209 Belvedere Avenue and will match the steps at the rear of the home.  To remove all asphalt existing layers of three tab shingles from roof and underlying cedar shakes and to replace with architectural shingles. They would install sheeting, ice & water shields, drip edges and etc.  Staff recommendation if this replacement be approved would be to photograph the original roofing and retain three cedar shakes for documentation.  This home was built in 1920 and there is no history of violations.

  • The concrete front steps are deteriorating and they are similar to the 209 Belvedere steps, they are planning on using the same contractor.  It is salt treated materials.

Motion to close the public session made by Ms. Smith and seconded by Mr. Berman.  All in favor and carried.

Mr. Berman made a motion to approve the rear steps of HPC#49 FY 2014-15, 116 Glenburn Avenue application as submitted.  Motion seconded by Mr. Nichols.  All approved and carried.

Ms. Weichmann spoke that this motion was for the approval of the steps and not the roof.

Mr. Nichols spoke to approve the details of the roof replacement per the application for HPC#49 FY 2014-15, 116 Glenburn Avenue. Motion seconded Mr. Berman.  All in favor and carried.

Case HPC#50 FY 2014-15, 104 Willis Street: Mr. Puglisi and Ms. Morgan request the approval to install ten 40”x66”X1.25” solar panels with black faces and black frames onto the rear, second story roof of the home, facing the rear and side yards.  They would be simi-visiable from the street.  The home was built in 1918 and no history of violations.   They are represented by Mr. Lesser their Solar Rep.

  • Application shows the location of the panels and type of panels.
  • They are visibility from the road.
  • Was the only south facing side of the roof and on the back half of the property.

Mr. Berman asked if this is a game changer for us, with a solar panel and them being visible from the road.  Willis Street is a one way street so everyone would see it.  Mr. Nichols spoke about needing more detailed scale drawings and will ask for deferrals until that time.  Mr. Lesser commented that the is no scale on this drawing, but the  panels are proportioned to that roof and they are 40”x60”x1.25”.  He also mentioned the HR ruling from the State of Maryland about solar panels being allowed in historic districts.

Ms. Kinser spoke that she and Mr. Collison had spoken on this issue and their understanding is that solar panel use can be restricted in Historic Districts.  It could be just on registered houses, we are still looking for more research.  Ms. Weichmann stated that we have allowed some in the district, but in the rear of the buildings or homes.

The Commission wants to get more information from the City Attorney.  Mr. Lesser asked if this address was registered through the State of Maryland as a Historic Home.

Closing of session motion made by Ms. Smith and seconded by Mr. Russo.  All in favor and carried.

A motion to defer the application HPC#50 FY 2014-15, 104 Willis Street by Mr. Russo and seconded by Mr. Nichols.

Case HPC#51 FY 2014-15, 205 West End Avenue: Mr. Grand want to replace one existing, white wood double hung window with one white, vinyl Simonton #6100, double hung, window on the right rear elevation.  The home was built in 1910 and there is no history of violations.   Homeowner has been looking for a contractor for this project and is still in process of looking.

No motion and defer on this application until next month.

Case HPC#52 FY 2014-15, 501 Gay Street: Mr. Brohawn requests an approval to refinish and paint the front door, replace boarded-up windows with glass storefront windows, install a rear entrance/exit door, and install a new sign that would be 5 ft. in diameter and replicate their sign on Poplar Street.  The building was built in 1930’s and Mr. Brohawn appeared at the May HPC meeting and there is no history of violations.

Tim Crosby, representative, has brought the information of the store front.

  • Actual working drawing with the storefront windows.
  • Fixing the existing front door and replace the boarded windows and install an exit door.
  • The RAR sign will match the existing sign is 5 feet in diameter.  Not to exceed 36” from the side of the building.
  • The main header is 5 ½” aligns with the header over the door between the transom and door.
  • The film on the window is a sandblasted piece of glass and the rest of the glass is clear.
  • The machinery from the glass will be about two to three feet.
  • The age of the building is around 1920’s.
  • The window size will be 13’x6’ and divided into three pieces.

Motion to close the open session by Mr. Berman and seconded by Mr. Russo.  All in favor and carried.

A motion to approve HPC#52 FY 2014-15, 501 Gay Street as submitted by Mr. Nichols and seconded by Mr. Russo.  All in favor and carried.

Informational Review:

505 & 507 Race Street: Mrs. Farrell McCoy (President of Historic Cambridge, Inc.) will present updates on the working being conducted by Historic Cambridge Incorporated at 505 & 507 Race Street.  She has submitted information for each Board member.

  • Brought some drawings about the buildings.
  • They have been raising funds to restore the 507 Race building.
  • The demo order from the City had been lifted and they could accept funds.  To date they have raise about $300,000.
  • The building is to be for a Performing Arts Center.
  • They have gotten a grant for the roof for $60,000.
  • They brought in an engineer whom said that the old roof had to come down first and so they used a lot of the grant money to remove the old roof.  The permit for the new roof from the City was accepted.  The engineer also advised them to brace the walls.
  • The organization had agreed with Dorchester County to take on the Hearn Building.  They also meet regularly with the Tolley’s that own the movie theater.  She has been speaking with Keyser Development and they may work on the Hearn Building.
  • The State of Maryland gave them a grant for the abandon build 505 Race Street and Mr. Rippons gave them the burnt out building 507 Race Street.
  • They have been given three years to get the project going and this December 2015 will be the deadline.  We are ready to start the roof.
  • Mr. Keyser wants to put in apartment in the Hearn Building.

Ms. Weichmann spoke about the mixed-use development.  Mr. Berman spoke that these buildings are in the Historic area of Race Street.

Ms. McCoy spoke of other grants are in the process right now.

Ms. Weichmann spoke on some seminars coming up this fall.  On September 19th we will meet at Clayton’s for the Maryland Association of Historic District Commissions that will be coming to Cambridge.

Mr. Berman spoke of Ms. Mary Callaway, applying for a grant for a façade program and she is looking for letters of support.

HPC will support the Community Legacy Grant for Ms. Callaway. A motion made by Mr. Berman and seconded by Ms. Smith.  All in favor and carried.

Mr. Nichols thanked Ms. Kinser for all her hard work.

Administratively Approved / Routine Maintenance:

AA#3 FY 2014-15, Glenburn Avenue: Ms. Worthington was approved to install an HVAC unit on the rear façade, not visible from ROW.

AA#4 FY 2014-15, 303 West End Avenue: Ms. Hastings was approved for an in-kind roof repair.

AA#5 FY 2014-15, 706 Water Street: Ms. Losty was approved to replace an asphalt roof in-kind under the condition that she will document and reserve underlying cedar shakes.

AA#6 FY 2014-15, 527 Poplar Street: Ms. Bramble was approved for an extension to her previous COA.

AA#7 FY 2014-15, 712 Church Street: Mr. and Mrs. Robinson were approved to replace/repair existing stairs, landing and garage.

AA#8 FY 2014-15, 102 West End Avenue: Mr. Parks was approved to repair porch flooring with in-kind materials.

AA#9 FY 2014-15, 116 Choptank Avenue: Mr. & Mrs. Phillips-Patrick were approved to replace brick stoop in-kind.

AA#10 FY 2014-15, 306 High Street: National Bank of Cambridge (1880 Bank) was approved to replace roof in-kind.

A motion to close the meeting by Mr. Russo and seconded by Ms. Smith.  All in favor and motion carried.  Hearing no further comments, Patricia Weichmann, Chair thanked everyone for attending and for their participation.

Meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted, Michal Dixon, Secretary, DPW