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HPC Minutes

March 20, 2104

The Historic Preservation Commission met on Thursday, March 20th, 2014 at the City Council Chambers, 305 Gay Street. Brian Roche, Chair, began the meeting at approximately 7:05PM and took a roll call of members attending.

Commissioners Attending: Brian Roche, Will Dennehy, Ron Berman, Patricia Weichmann.

Commissioners Absent: Mike Russo, Dormaim Bromwell Green.

Other representatives or staff attending: Dan Brandewie, City Planner II. Commissioner Jackie Vickers.

Brian Roche noted there were no new agenda items and no consent items. Staff confirmed that all agenda items have been properly advertised. Mr. Roche provided the opening statement and swore in persons wishing to testify.

Approval of Minutes:

Mr. Roche asked members for a motion on the following sets of minutes:

February 20th, 2014 Regular Meeting
March 13th, 2014 Workshop

Will Dennehy moved to approve both sets of minutes as submitted; second by Patricia Weichmann. Motion carried.

Extension/Continuation Cases

HPC#35-FY 13-14, 104 Choptank Ave.: Pete Doyle (owner) replace 21 existing windows (2 over 2) and exterior aluminum storm windows with vinyl replacement windows (2 over 2) with interior grids. At the Feb. 20th meeting, HPC acted to table action on this application. Mr. Brandewie noted that he has received email correspondence from Mr. Doyle. He desires to do more research and would like to table the application to the April meeting. No action needed.

HPC#36-FY 13-14, 201 High St.: Anne and Terence Tiernan (owners), request to permanently remove or demolish 2nd story porch and stairs at rear of house. At the February 20th meeting; HPC acted to table this application. Mr. Brandewie stated that he has mailed a copy of the staff decision on the two family apartment zoning issue to the owner. This correspondence also included research on the porch as noted on the 1918 Sanborn Maps. Copies of this material were also provided to HPC members. Staff has not heard back from the owners and it is presumed that they want to continue to table the application. No action needed by HPC members.

Regular Agenda Items

HPC#38-FY 13-14, 109 Belvedere Ave.: Alvin Moore (owner), request to resize two window openings in upper front dormers to original size (30" by 47") and replace two existing vinyl windows with 6 over 1 replacement windows.

Mr. Moore presented his case to the HPC. He seeks to remove two undersized vinyl windows on the front, two upper dormer rooms located on the roof of the house. These windows were installed several years ago. They are not the correct size and he seeks to replace these windows, change the opening back to its original size and install vinyl, 6 over 1 replacement windows into the new opening. Staff showed pictures of what the windows looked like before the change and a photo of the dormer's interior of showing the framing of the new, undersized windows. It was noted that the HPC had approved window replacements for the main floor of the house around 2008 or 2009.

Hearing no further comments from the public, the HPC acted to close the discussion. HPC members commended Mr. Moore for seeking to restore the windows back to the original opening and asked if he would consider a higher grade window with exterior muntins. Mr. Moore stated that his preference is to install a window that matches the existing windows.

Will Dennehy noted that the house is on the edge of the period of significance and that the house already has substitute material installed such as vinyl siding and vinyl windows. The proposed windows would not detract from the contributing character of the house. Ms. Weichmann and Mr. Berman concurred with these findings. Mr. Dennehy moved to approve the application as submitted. Second by Ron Berman. Motion carried 4-0 in favor.

HPC#39-FY 13-14, 504 Poplar St.: Real Ale Revival Brewery, James T. Merryweather (owner): to expand the existing 3 ft. door opening in rear of building to accommodate a new 3 ft. metal door and a 5 ft. roll up garage door.

Mr. Brandewie reviewed the application and showed pictures of the exterior and interior of the rear wall area of the structure. The applicant is seeking to create a new opening in the rear wall by removing the existing brick. They are proposing to install a 5' by 8' roll up commercial door and to re-locate and re-install a metal entrance door in the opening. He noted that upon his inspection last week, the brick in the rear wall has already been removed with framing installed and a plywood cover placed over the opening. The structure was built in 1920 but is classified as a non-contributing structure. One can still see old brick in the walls and remnants of a pressed tin ceiling in the rear area. It is believed there was a fire in the structure at some point in the past and with the remodeling done to it, it was classified as a non-contributing structure during the preparation of the Historic District Nomination Report. The wall is in the rear, not visible from the primary view of the structure.

Mr. J.T. Merryweather presented more information to the Commission. Unfortunately, they were forced to remove the brick ahead of the meeting due to the deliveries of supplies that could not go through the door. This was an event they had not anticipated. They have saved some of the brick. He cited reference to the Guidelines and the streetscape. He believed that the roll-up door was not inconsistent with the streetscape. He offered to build a brick header over the top of the roll up door. There were no further comments from the audience.

Mr. Brandewie noted that there was also a piece of HVAC equipment installed in the rear that was not reviewed by the HPC. Mr. Merryweather stated that he was told that he didn't need Building Permits for this.

HPC members advised the applicant to call staff in situations like. Mr. Roche believed the change will be me minimally visible from the street. After further discussion, Mr. Denney moved to approve the application as submitted with the following conditions: (a) the area around the top of the roll-up door shall be re-built with original brick with a soldier course; (b) the applicant shall prepare a screening plan for the HVAC equipment installed in the rear of the structure and present this plan back to the HPC for review. Second by Ron Berman. Motion carried 4-0 in favor.

HPC#40-FY 13-14, 600 block of Glasgow St. Delmarva Community Services, request for approval of design and placement of bus shelter.

Mr. Jerome Stanley presented the application to the HPC members with additional information provided by staff. Mr. Brandewie handed out a new site plan showing the proposed location of the bus shelter. It is now to be located on Lot 0321, Tax Map 0301, on property owned by Shahzad Azam. The premise address is 600 Glasgow Street and it is a vacant residential lot. Mr. Azam also owns the commercial property next door that is occupied by a convenience store. He has granted approval for the placement of the shelter, according to Anne Roane. The shelter would be located on the northeast corner next to the convenience store's property line. Previously, the shelter was being considered for placement on the Zion Methodist Church's property located further to the southwest along Glasgow Street. The Zion Methodist Church Board members have declined the use of their property for the shelter for a number of reasons according to Mr. Brandewie.

Mr. Stanley proceeded to review the design of the shelter and its specifications. The transit system is growing. The proposed location is just down from a bus stop on Glasgow Street. The need for a shelter at this location is important, especially in view of the weather experienced over the winter. The shelter is one of three purchased with a grant and is estimated to cost $8,000 to $10,000. This would be the only bus shelter in the Historic District. It has a metal roof and is simple in design. The City of Cambridge would be assisting with the installation of a concrete pad. Mr. Brandewie noted that Guidelines make reference to streetscape and street furniture and suggest that street furniture be simple in design and be compatible in style and scale with the adjacent buildings open areas. There were no additional comments from the public and the HPC acted to close the discussion.

HPC members discussed the proposed design and location. They thought this location to be appropriate for a bus shelter. Members thought the design to be appropriate. Questions were raised about whether there was to be advertising on the structure; if there was to be trash pick-up and maintenance responsibilities. It was recommended by Mr. Dennehy that no advertising be permitted on the shelter. Mr. Roche recommended that no trash receptacle be installed as it was his belief that it would attract more trash than if there were no trash receptacle, given the location to the convenience store. Members concurred with these recommendations and Mr. Stanley had no objections to these proposed conditions. After further discussion, Mr. Dennehy moved to approve the design and revised location as submitted with the further stipulation that there be no advertising permitted on the shelter; and that there be no trash receptacle installed at this location. If one is needed, the request would have to be brought back to the HPC. Patricia Weichmann seconded the motion. Motion carried 4-0 in favor.

Administratively Approved/Routine Maintenance:

Mr. Roche noted the following items were approved administratively.

HPC-Adm. #25A, FY 13-14, 308 West End: Installation of ground mounted satellite dish in rear of building. Administratively approved, March 6th, 2014.

HPC-Adm. #26A, FY13-14, 117 West End Ave.: installation of membrane roof (less than 10 sq. ft. on rear room addition). Not visible from the street. Administratively approved.

Enforcement Update

Mr. Brandewie reported that a violation notice was issued to the property at 221 Choptank Avenue.

Other Business

Mr. Brandewie stated that he met with one potential consultant that expressed interest in the work on the Guidelines. Additional names were provided by HPC members to follow up with by staff. He also noted that a NAHPC conference is coming up in July for the benefit of members as staff. The City may help pay for some of the cost to attend by HPC members. He also stated that the HPC members have a $1,000 training grant available. An email was sent out explaining some training options. Members expressed interest in item 2 "Connecting with your Community: Communication, Education, and Outreach" and recommended staff further contact MAHDC about pursuing this option.

Members then proceeded to discuss the status of the guidelines and recent changes made by staff and Mr. Dennehy that was sent out today. Members were reminded to send changes in to Mr. Brandewie by March 27th. Mr. Berman has sent out an email also which suggested a format or schedule for review of the guidelines. Discussion followed.


The April HPC Workshop will be held on April 3rd but the regular meeting date will be held on April 24th, the 4th Tuesday and not on April 17th. The meeting concluded at approximately 9:45PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Daniel L. Brandewie, City Planner II

Signature: ____________________________________ Date: _______________________


Note: These minutes were approved at the meeting of the Historic Preservation Commission meeting on April 24th, 2014.


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