(a)   The City of Ashtabula hereby declares as a matter of policy the importance of safeguarding the architectural integrity of historic sites, buildings, structures, works of art and other objects having a special historical, community or aesthetic interest or value in the interest of the health, prosperity, safety and welfare of the residents of the City.
   (b)   It is the intent of this chapter to establish procedures whereby certain areas, places, sites, buildings, structures and objects shall be allowed the measure of protection afforded by a thorough study of alternatives to incompatible alterations or demolition before such acts are performed, so that the following objectives are achieved:
      (1)   To promote the use and preservation of historic buildings, structures, and sites which reflect the cultural, social, economic, political, or architectural heritage of the City for the education and general welfare of the people of Ashtabula.
      (2)   To protect and enhance the attractiveness of the City as it relates to residents, tourists and visitors, serving as a support and stimulant to business, and thereby strengthening the economy of the City of Ashtabula and its residents.
      (3)   To stabilize and increase the property values within the City.
      (4)   To facilitate the reinvestment in and the revitalization of certain older districts and neighborhoods.
      (5)   To enhance the visual and aesthetic character, diversity and interests of the City.
      (6)   To preserve and further enhance the civic pride of the residents of Ashtabula in the beauty of the City and in the notable accomplishments of its past.
      (7)   To protect the property rights of owners whose properties lie within areas of historic architectural significance.
         (Ord.  2019-91.  Passed 8-5-19.)