Village Considers Revisions to Historic District
The Pinehurst Village Council on Tuesday reviewed a revised proposed historic preservation district that now incorporates streets and homes that a consultant had excluded.
Planning Director Andrea Correll told the council that the state Historic Preservation Office, which serves as a "clearinghouse" for local historic districts, endorsed the inclusion of Village Lane and some other cul-de-sacs. Several home owners asked that those areas be included.
Buildings constructed between 1895 and 1970 -- the period in which the founding Tufts family owned Pinehurst -- that have retained their historic architecture are considered contributing properties in the district. Other structures built since 1970, or older ones in which the exteriors have been extensively altered, are noncontributing properties.
During the council work session, two more homes were added to the boundary map as contributing properties, to correct an oversight by the consultant, Circa Inc. They are on McKenzie Road near Graham. They were built during the required time frame.
Several other homes on cul-de-sacs were recommended to be included in the proposed map, using five criteria under the North Carolina statute governing local historic district designations, Correll said. The Circa report had been using three of the five criteria, but the state Historic Preservation Office said the cul-de-sac properties could be included because they are on the site of former historic properties.
'Compromising the District'
Councilwoman Lorraine Tweed said the consultant, April Montgomery, "gave very good reasons why Village Lane and other properties would not be contributing properties." Mont-gomery recommended that the cul de sacs are not considered within the historic timeline for Pinehurst, though the address is on a street behind the Carolina Hotel and the site of former historic properties.
"Every time somebody stands up and cries that they aren't in the historic preservation district, we say, 'OK,'" she said. "Are we compromising our district? My concern was, were we bastardizing our district because we were accepting these areas whenpeople came in and begged and pleaded to be included as contributing properties?"
Tweed later said she understood the rationale for including those areas.
Correll said Montgomery toured those areas by vehicle along with a representative of the Historic Preservation Office. She said they all agreed to add them because some of the properties did fulfill other of the state's allowable criteria that were not used in the original consultant's report.
A third party will provide documentation to the village Historic District Commission supporting the inclusion of the added properties, Correll said.
Mayor Steve Smith commented that if Montgomery was in agreement, then he was ready to approve the boundary map along with the proposed standards and guidelines for new construction and renovations to the exteriors of buildings in the historic district.
The Historic Preservation District Commission is to review the recommended map changes and the standards and guidelines.
The council could vote to adopt both map and standards at its next regular meeting Sept. 26 at 1 p.m. in the Assembly Hall. A fourth and final public hearing is set for the boundary map during that meeting.
Standards and Guidelines
A public information session is set next Tuesday, Sept. 19, from 4 to 7 p.m., in the Village Assembly Hall, to familiarize Pinehurst property owners with the proposed standards and guidelines for all property in the historic district boundary map.
Pinehurst is the only municipality to incorporate several golf courses in its local Historic Preservation District, Correll noted. The historic courses and village itself are already on the National Register of Historic Places.
The proposed new ordinance excluded fields of play from the standards and guidelines. That is still a concern for legal representatives of Pinehurst Resort.
The Village Council is to retain the power to determine the boundaries of the historic district. Mayor Steve Smith said that allows the decision-makers to be voted out of office if the public doesn't like the map.
The standards and guidelines for construction would also cover some minor work such as repainting a home. Even replacing a gutter requires attention to make sure its appearance fits the historic era of the property.
Penalties for violating the new Historic Preservation District zoning ordinance will be the same as for other Pinehurst Development Ordinance violations: $500 fine per day for each violation.
Smith praised Correll for widely disseminating information to the public about the historic preservation district process.
Steve Harris, president of the Moore County Homebuilders Association, gave Correll a verbal pat on the back for representing the village well at a meeting the previous night. He said she fielded many questions.
Harris and Smith exchanged thank-yous for the mutual cooperation extended during roundtable workshops held many months last year to work out the landscaping and architecture requirements. Harris later had to step down from that group because the state organization is involved in a legal fight over towns' authority to impose architectural requirements.
Some changes to the landscaping and architecture requirements for new home construction in several zoning districts are being incorporated for a continuation of the public hearing, Aug. 22 to Sept. 26.
In other business:
-- The council adopted a Municipal Service District assessment to pay for state-ordered repairs to the dam on Pond 1, allowing a discount for early payment before 15 years and eliminating interest. The village is splitting the $500,000 tab with 22 property owners in the service district.
The council approved transferring excess fund balance for the last fiscal year totaling $646,800 to the Capital Reserve Fund.
-- The council also received a needs assessment survey for parks and recreation that showed a majority of residents favor adding new programs and services as long as they don't require a property tax increase.
Further details will be provided later.
Councilman Doug Lapins reminded the council that money will be spent in the next five or so years to relocate the public works complex out of the NewCore area, and another expensive recreation program on the agenda is to build an indoor recreation center that has been included on the list of Capital Improvement Plan projects.
"Three cents in the tax rate was added a couple of years ago to pay for these Comprehensive Long Range Planning objectives we're already doing," he said.
Sara Lindau can be reached at 693-2473 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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