Historic Preservation Commission

In 2017, the Historic Preservation Commission and city staff began a project to update design guidelines. These documents have been approved, and the Historic Preservation Commission would like to thank you for your input.

Click the links below to download approved sections of the Historic Preservation Guidelines.

Historic Preservation District Guidelines

- Appendix A

- Appendix B

- Appendix C

- HPC Guidelines' Additional Materials

- Administrative Review Chart

- HPC Public Survey Results

Regular Meeting

  • 6 p.m.
  • 3rd Wednesday of every month
  • City Council Chambers
    305 Gay Street


  • Susan Webb
    Term Expires: July 10, 2027
  • Penny Introcaso - Alternate 
    Term Expires: July 10, 2027
  • Tim Crosby 
    Term Expires: May 8, 2027

  • Bronte Lake
    Term Expires: August 31, 2025
  • Greg McNamara                                  Term Expires: August 31, 2027


By statue, the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) has as its basic purpose the preservation of sites, structures, and districts of historical, cultural, archaeological, architectural significance together with their appurtenances and environmental settings. It is charged with implementing Cambridge's Historic Overlay Zoning (adopted as Ordinance 814 and amended to the Zoning Code in 2003 per Article IX, Part VI, Section 185-196).

The Commission's mandate is to safeguard Cambridge's heritage and its broadly visible waterfront within the Historic District.
white historic house
To accomplish this task the HPC is required to review and issue Certificates of Appropriateness (COA's) for all exterior alterations to property in the historic district, including alterations that cannot be seen from the street or water based on Guidelines adopted by the City. This includes restoration, rehabilitation, new construction, renovations, and major landscaping as well as replacing building components, such as roofs, doors, windows, porches, railings, and curb cuts. The Commission does not review paint color.


The Historic Preservation Commission consists of five members and one alternate appointed by the City Council. A majority of the members shall be City residents. Appointees must possess professional or academic qualifications or, have a demonstrated special interest in historic preservation through training, education, employment, experience or membership in a related organization.

Additional Information

National Register of Historic Places-Nomination Report: Cambridge Historic District Wards I and III, Dorchester County, D-699

Staff Support

The Department of Public Works provides staff support to the Commission and can assist property owners within the District for the application of COA's. In addition, staff administers and enforces Historic Overlay zoning, issues building permits and responds to property code violations.

Application Process

For information on the application process, deadlines for submission or meeting schedules or to report a violation, call the Cambridge Planning Office at 410-228-1955.

HPC Meeting Schedule

Scheduled Meeting Date Submission Deadline
March 20, 2024 February 21, 2024
April 17, 2024 March 20, 2024
May 15, 2024 April 17, 2024
June 19, 2024 May 15, 2024
July 17, 2024 June 19, 2024
August 21, 2024 July 17, 2024
September 18, 2024 August 21, 2024
October 16, 2024 September 18, 2024
November 20, 2024 October 16, 2024
December 18, 2024 November 20, 2024
  December 18, 2024