As the built environment of Portland evolves at an astonishing pace, we place an immeasurable value on the preservation of our city’s architectural integrity. One of the ways that Portland protects the charm and character of our city is through the designation of Historic Districts. These are neighborhoods that have been deemed to be of particular historic or cultural significance and are protected by certain rules and regulations. If you are lucky enough to own a home in one of these special districts, (or if you are considering buying a home in one), you need to know what this means for your house and potential remodel projects. Luckily, you have a team of experts at Arciform to help you stay informed!
If you are considering a remodel that will alter the exterior of your Historic District home, it is very likely that your project will have to pass Historic Review. During this process, we are required by the City to produce detailed drawings and documents that demonstrate how the proposed project will enhance (and not degrade) the historic architecture of the home and neighborhood.
Whether you are building a dormer or adding a window and door (as in the above Alphabet District home), the City will carefully analyze the proposed design to make sure that the historically significant details of your home’s architecture are preserved and incorporated into the design. These details include (but are not limited to) such things as: balance, proportion, massing, roof pitch, building materials and millwork profiles. As experts in historic remodeling, Arciform is well-versed in the requirements for Historic Review and thus, we are able to effectively get ahead of the process and set client expectations for budget and timelines.
The beautiful home pictured above (located in the Irvington District) underwent an extensive Historic Review process for the proposed exterior work and new back steps and patio. Upon completion, the homeowners had a newly invigorated and more functional space, while maintaining the integrity of the 1915 Prairie Style architecture.
If you have been considering a remodel on your Historic District home, we are the firm for you! We can educate you about tax incentives and the Historic Review process, as our experienced Designers and expert carpenters ensure that your very special home will stay true to its unique character and to the intrinsic value of your neighborhood.
-By Anna Foltz