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To consider the establishment of a historic district or landmark, the following procedure shall be followed:
(a) The initiation of a proposal for a historic district shall be made only by a property owner(s) in the proposed district area. Property owner(s) of the proposed district shall present to the ALHPC a petition, expressing their desire to be declared a historic district, which shall specify the characteristics of the district that uniquely define it as historic. The boundaries of the proposed district shall be specified. The petition shall be signed by the owners of no less than seventy-five percent of the total square footage of the area to be included in the district and shall include verification of such requirements with reference to the Lorain County Auditor's real property records.
(b) The initiation of a proposal for a landmark shall be made only by the landmark property owner(s). Said property owner(s) shall submit the proposal for landmark status to the ALHPC, and such proposal shall specify the characteristics of the property that uniquely define it as historic.
(c) The ALHPC shall consider the proposal in terms of the criteria provided in Section 1268.05. After review, the ALHPC shall forward the proposal with its recommendation along with the owners' written comments to the Planning Commission.
(d) The applicant(s) requesting the district or landmark historic designation shall apply to the Planning Commission. The applicant(s) shall be exempt from the Planning Commission agenda fee. The proposal shall be placed on the agenda for the next scheduled Planning Commission meeting. No public hearing is required for landmark designations. The Planning Commission shall hold a public hearing on a proposal for a historic district. Public notice shall be posted on the property proposed for a landmark designation or on four cornering properties proposed for a historic district designation at least ten days prior to the hearing date. Notice of such public hearing shall be given in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the City at least ten days before the date of said public hearing. The Planning Commission Secretary shall send written notice of the hearing at least ten days before the day of the public hearing to all owners within the proposed historic district.
(e) Planning Commission shall recommend one of the following to Council:
(1) That the proposal be approved as requested;
(2) That the proposal be approved as modified by the Planning Commission; or
(3) That the proposal be denied.
(f) Upon receipt of the Planning Commission's recommendation, the City Council shall cause an appropriate ordinance to be prepared stating the reason for the designation of a landmark or the establishment of a historic district. A public hearing shall be scheduled on the proposed legislation. Notice of the public hearing shall be given by Council in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the City. Said notice shall be published at least thirty days before the date of the required hearing. The published notice shall include the time and place of the public hearing, a summary of the proposal and a statement that opportunity to be heard will be afforded to any person interested. If the proposal involves a landmark or a historic district of ten or less parcels of land, as listed on the tax duplicate, written notice of the hearing shall be mailed by the Clerk of Council at least thirty days before the day of the public hearing to all owners of property within 300 feet of such area to the addresses of such owners appearing on the County Auditor's current tax list. The notice shall contain the same information as required of notices published in newspapers as specified above.
(g) Council shall give due consideration to the findings and recommendations of the ALHPC and the Planning Commission and to the public hearing comments and shall make a final determination. City Council shall:
(1) Approve the proposal as requested and designate the landmark or district as a historic property. Approval shall require a two-thirds majority to override a proposal previously denied by the Planning Commission.
(2) Deny the proposal.
(h) After a decision by City Council, the Clerk of Council shall notify all persons known to have a legal or equitable interest in said property. The Planning Commission, the Zoning Administrator and ALHPC shall also be notified.
(i) The Clerk of Council shall notify any appropriate county, State or Federal offices after a designation is approved. The Clerk of Council shall cause to be recorded in the office of the Lorain County Recorder a copy of each ordinance designating a preservation district or landmark.
(j) No legislation under this section shall be rendered invalid by any failure or alleged failure to provide a prescribed notice by mail or otherwise by person.
(k) Designation of a historic district or landmark shall be considered a district overlay with the regulations of the underlying zoning district remaining in effect for any property designated as a landmark or included in a historic district.
(l) Following the designation of the landmark property, the ALHPC may place or cause to be placed on such landmark an official City plaque, indicating that such property or part thereof has been designated a landmark in the City. In case of designation of a district, the ALHPC may place or cause to be placed official City plaques at appropriate location(s) near all entranceways to the new district. Plaques shall be installed subject to the provisions of Chapter 1262. These official plaques shall remain the property of the City.
(Ord. 36-2010. Passed 3-22-10; Ord. 100-2012. Passed 7-9-12; Ord. 83-2013. Passed 3-24-13; Ord. 154-2014. Passed 12-8-14.)