Niskayuna seeks to create a historic preservation code; Would identify sites, offer better review – The Daily Gazette

NISKAYUNA — City officials say creating a historic preservation code would not only help identify historic sites, but also allow for better review of projects at those locations, among other things.

The city will hold a public hearing regarding the creation of the code on Tuesday, March 22.

City historian Denis Brennan said he and city planner Laura Robertson had been working on developing the code for some time.

After from Your Niskayuna – The Daily Gazette

Once approved, the code would create a five-member commission, including the city historian. This commission would be responsible for actions such as:

  • Creation of an inventory of historic sites
  • Establish guidelines on what can be a designated historic place
  • Make recommendations to City Council on what should be listed on the City’s Register of Historic Places or be considered a Historic District
  • Recommend the use of state, federal, or private funds to preserve sites
  • Adviser to other councils including City Council and Planning Board

Brennan said the commission would also be able to review any demolition permit for a building over 49 years old.

The proposed creation of the commission comes several years after the city’s controversial decision regarding the historic Stanford Mansion. This building was moved from its original location at Balltown Road and State Street to another area of ​​the property so that the land could be developed into what is now Mansion Square.

The mansion was built in the 19th century. It housed three city overseers and later became the home of the Schuyler family and later Charles Stanford, a prominent Niskayuna businessman.

“There were a lot of people upset about it,” Brennan said.

The situation even played out in court, with the developer ultimately winning.

Although the Stanford problem is a thing of the past, lessons learned from that experience will help the board make decisions moving forward, said Kevin Walsh, chairman of the planning board.

“It provides an opportunity that we currently don’t have to protect anything of historical significance,” he said.

Journalist Shenandoah Brière can be reached at 518-478-3320 or by email at [email protected]

After from Your Niskayuna – The Daily Gazette

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