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The Preservation Society of Charleston’s mission is to cultivate interest in and advocate for the preservation of buildings, sites and structures of historical or aesthetic significance.  Staff members appear at public meetings of the City of Charleston’s Board of Architectural Review, Board of Zoning Appeals, Commercial Corridor Design Review Board, Planning Commission, and City Council to present position statements on matters critical to the future of Charleston’s historic districts.  Preservation Society staff, with the Preservation Society’s Planning and Zoning Committee, review proposals for alterations, additions, and proposed demolitions to historic properties in historic districts as well as proposed new construction in the area.  The Preservation Society represents the interests of over 3,000 members.  For City of Charleston agendas and information about upcoming public meetings visit the City’s website at http://www.charlestoncity.info/dept/?nid=8.

Preservation Society staff also meet with property owners, architects, developers, and neighborhood association leaders to discuss proposed projects as well as offer technical advice.  

Charleston’s Old and Historic District was created in 1931, the result of the first city zoning ordinance in the nation enacted for the purpose of protecting historic resources. The Society for the Preservation of Old Dwellings, now known as the Preservation Society of Charleston, was instrumental in urging city council to pass this pioneer legislation.
Originally consisting of 138 acres on the lower peninsular, the district has been expanded twice and now includes over 4,800 historic structures. Within the district are architecturally significant structures built between 1712-1945 which are representative of a wide range of architectural styles. The Old and Historic District encompasses much of the core of the historic city which was the center of the city’s civic, social and business life. This area has been designated by the National Park Service as a National Landmark District.
The Old City district is a local historic district located south of Line Street and north of the Old and Historic District. Click here to view a map of Charleston’s Old and Historic District and Old City District.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/shared/docs/18/historic.pdf

Board of Architectural Review
– Reviews requests for exterior alterations, new construction, and demolition of structures within the Old and Historic District and the Old City District. Reviews requests for demolition in the Hampton Park Terrace Historic District. For guidelines and information on submitting applications contact the City of Charleston Department of Design, Development and Preservation.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/dept/content.aspx?nid=491&cid=655

Commercial Corridor Design Review Board – Reviews requests for alterations, new construction and demolition of buildings along major commercial corridors outside the Old and Historic District and the Old City District. For guidelines and information on submitting applications contact the City of Charleston Department of Design, Development and Preservation.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/dept/content.aspx?nid=492

Board of Zoning Appeals – Zoning – Hears and decides appeals for variances or special exceptions from the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Charleston that pertain to, among other things, use changes, parking requirements, lot occupancy and density. For guidelines and information on submitting applications contact the City of Charleston Zoning Department.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/dept/content.aspx?nid=91

Board of Zoning Appeals – Site Design – Hears and decides appeals for variances or special exceptions from the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Charleston that pertain to, among other things, site design, landscape buffers, and tree removal. For guidelines and information on submitting applications contact the City of Charleston Zoning Department.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/dept/content.aspx?nid=91

Planning Commission – Has the power and duty to prepare and recommend to City Council plans and programs to, among other things, revise city zoning districts, regulate subdivisions and the development of land, and review and comment on the compatibility of any new street, park, open space or structure with the City’s comprehensive plan. For information regarding guidelines and information on submitting application contact the City of Charleston Zoning Department.
http://www.ci.charleston.sc.us/dept/content.aspx?nid=91


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Charleston, SC 29402

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