Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Historical Commission Meeting

My meeting with the Executive Director of the Historical Commission went well...but not a slam dunk. I have to say it was incredibly nice of him to take the time to meet with one lowly homeowner in search of input and support. He opened my blueprints and scanned across the street elevation with his hand, his finger stopping at each of the integral details: the pediment, the windows, the sidelights, the skirt detail around the porch. Each was accompanied by a nod of approval until he got to the columns. "Your columns are undersized," he pointed out. "I was intending to do something much chunkier," I agreed.

"What style columns are you using?"

Uh-oh. A test.

"Fluted doric."

"Well, that would be right."

I guess I passed the test.

I brought up the issue of the expanded living room windows pointing out that we've included an enlarged window in the plans but if we discover the windows did not go to the floor (thinking that would be what the Historical Commission would prefer) and he explained I can't to do that. If I get a variance for a plan with larger windows, that would be what I *have* to do. If I want to keep them the same, I would have to get another variance.

So I guess I'm doing the larger windows. It's a detail I really love so I'll be happy with that even if the cost is greater.

He suggested that I update the plans with more detail. So I had to go back to The Architects to have them tweak the plan.

And here's the new elevation showing the full-figure fluted doric columns. I also had them show a six-panel front door, the top two panels being glass and we've added mullions to the sidelights. It looks better don't you think?

Now I just need to get three new sets of blueprints printed and get the updated plans to the Zoning Board.


  1. Looks great. I love the full size windows! I need to fill you in on my genealogy research - thanks to your inspiration.

  2. I think it's going to be a knockout! I'm pretty impressed with how smooth/quickly the whole process has progressed too. What have you decided on for colors?

  3. Try doing that in Los Angeles, it would take weeks if not months. The house is going to look so wonderful. I agree on all the changes. Sorry, I can not be the one to give you the permit.

  4. It's fabulous Steve! Love the changes and what a great idea to sit down with the Executive Director of the Historical Commission. I'm sure that your house is completely ecstatic by your passion to revive it.

  5. The plans look very nice. I love full size windows too. Good luck!

  6. What a journey! I'm glad you got the opportunity to speak with him -I love his ideas about the larger windows and the chunkier columns. The front has a much grander presence now - it looks more like an historical renovation rather than just rehabbing the front. I am really impressed with everyone's attention to details ~ such as the paned front door. The wrong front door could really ruin the whole look and everything you are trying to accomplish. With the Director's imput, I'm sure the zoning comm. will give you the okay.
    Have you decided yet about the siding or boards and the color?