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North Carolina Law requires that you obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness before you can obtain a building permit or a demolition permit for intended material changes to a designated Historic Landmark. This completed application must be submitted to:

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission
2100 Randolph Road
Charlotte, N.C. 28207

Click here to see a video on the Design Review Process.  This video will walk you through the entire process.

Application Deadline: the second Monday of each month at 4:30PM.  (See schedule on application. Please note, the Commission does not meet in July.)

Applicants who are seeking  Federal or State income tax credits for certified rehabilitations should submit with this application a copy of the ruling from the National Park Service or the North Carolina Division of Archives and History that the plans accompanying this application meet the Secretary of the Interior's Standards.  State and Federal Investment Tax Credits that may be available for the rehabilitation of historic properties.  Click here to read the details about Federal and State Tax Credits.

Please be advised that the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission uses the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings to determine whether an intended action is appropriate or inappropriate. Click here to read a copy of the Secretary of the Interior's Standards.

Click here to see local examples of how the standards have been applied.

You may print this application and fill it out, or you may copy the application and paste it into a Word document. Or you may click here to access the application in a Word document.

Please make sure your application is complete. Committee members need to understand exactly how the proposed changes to the Historic Landmark will look or affect the property. Use the checklist in the application to assure that you have included sufficiently detailed information. We anticipate that you or your representative will present your application to the Design Review Committee.

If you have any questions or require special assistance, please contact us at 376-9115.


Does your pending project require a Federal or State license, permit or approval? (circle one)  Yes    No

I, the undersigned, do hereby apply for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the following project that will materially alter an architecturally, historically, or culturally significant feature of a designated Historic Landmark within the jurisdiction of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission.

Name of Landmark:


Address of Landmark:


Owned by:


Are you the owner of the property? (circle one)  Yes    No

If you are not the owner of the property, has the property owner approved the proposed material alteration?

(circle one)  Yes    No

Tax Parcel Number (s) of the Historic Landmark: _________________________________________

Please Note: All neighboring property owners will be notified of the proposed project.

Mark the items below that best describe your intended actions.

Exterior Alteration: _____

Interior Alteration: _____

Addition or New Construction: _____

Demolition: _____

Other: _____ Please Explain: _______________________________________________________

Describe clearly and in detail the nature of your project:




Attach additional sheets of descriptions, drawings, photographs, maps, or any other graphic material information which you deem necessary to describe the project.  Electronic files for all of the descriptive materials are welcomed.  Use the checklist attached to make sure your application is complete. Please be advised that the Design Review Committee of the Historic Landmarks Commission or the Historic Landmarks Commission itself may require you to submit additional illustrative materials.  

I understand that this application must be returned to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission, 2100 Randolph Road, Charlotte, N.C. 28207 no later than 4:30 P.M. on the date established as the deadline for the meeting of the Design Review Committee at which the application shall be considered (see attached schedule of meetings of the Design Review Committee with appropriate deadlines).

Name of Applicant: _____________________________________

Telephone No. _____________

Street Address: _______________________________________________

City ________________ State________________ Zip________________

Applicant's Signature: _______________________________________

Date: _______________

All electronic material can be sent to:

For any questions, contact the Historic Landmarks Commission, at 376-9115.

The Commission's mailing address is:  Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission, 2100 Randolph Road, Charlotte, N.C. 28207. If the application is hand delivered, use the mail slot on the front door of the HLC Office.

Fee Schedule

Estimated Project Cost

Review Fee
Express Review Fee

0 -$100,000



$100,000 - $200,000



$200,000 - $500,000



$500,000 - $750,000



$750,000 - $1,000,000



$1,000,000 and up

$1,000.00 + $500/additional $500,000 value

$2,000.00 + $500/additional $500,000 value

The fee must be submitted with the application in the form of a check made out to "Mecklenburg County."

Schedule of Meetings and Applicable Deadlines for the Design Review Committee Of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission. 

The Design Review Committee Meetings begin at 8:00 am.  Historic Landmarks Commission Meetings begin at 6:00 pm. Applications must arrive at the HLC office no later than 4:30PM on the date of the applicable deadline.

Application Deadlines

Design Review Meeting Date and

Express Review Application Deadlines

Historic Landmarks Commission Meeting (Potential Final Action)
8/12/13 8/28/13 9/9/13
9/9/13 9/25/13 10/14/13
10/14/13 10/30/13 11/11/13
11/11/13 11/27/13 12/9/13
12/9/13 12/25/13 1/13/14
1/13/14 1/29/14 2/10/14
2/10/14 2/26/14 3/10/14
3/10/14 3/26/14 4/14/14
4/14/14 4/30/14 5/12/14
5/12/14 5/28/14 6/9/14
6/9/14 6/25/14 No meeting in July.
8/11/2014 8/27/2014 8/8/2014
9/8/2014 9/24/2014 10/13/2014
10/13/2014 10/29/2013 11/10/2014

Please note that the Commission has no meetings in July.  The Design Review Committee does not meet in December.

Express Review: An Express Review option is available for applicants who can not meet the regular application deadlines.  Under Express Review, proposed projects are taken directly to the full Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission for consideration.  Because the review of projects by the Design Review Committee is extremely helpful in the Commission's decision making process, it is strongly urged that all projects go through the normal design review process if  possible.  If applicants wish to have their projects considered under Express Review, they are encouraged to submit the application as soon as possible so that HLC Staff can properly prepare materials for the Commission's consideration.  Choosing the Express Review option will in no way affect the eligibility of a proposed project for approval.


Your Application Should Include The Following Materials.  The absence of any of the materials listed below may invalidate your application.

1. A Written Description of the project. Describe clearly and in detail the nature of your project. Attach additional sheets of description as necessary to describe the project completely. Include exact details for materials to be used (such as the width of siding), and length of time estimated to complete the project.

2. For exterior alteration, additions, and unattached new construction, a plan showing the relationship of the buildings, additions, sidewalks, drives, trees, etc., to the property lines may be required. This plan does not have to be drawn to scale but the measurements shown should be accurate. If available, electronic JPEG or PDF files are welcomed.   

3. Photographs of existing conditions, the area (s) in question for change, etc.  If printed, photographs should be labeled, giving date the photograph was taken, the name of the Historic Landmark, and a description of the area of the property included in each photograph.

JPEG files are welcomed.  JPEG files should be given a descriptive name. A key linking the images to a site or floor plan may be required.

4. Plans showing proposed work, giving accurate dimensions. These plans might include floor plans and elevations. JPEG or PDF files are welcomed.   If submitting hard copies, include three copies of any plans or drawings.  Additional copies may be required.

5. A check (see fee schedule) made out to "Mecklenburg County. " 

6. If you live in a local historic district, you must also obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness from the local historic district commission as well. For further information on this subject, if you live in Charlotte, contact Wanda Birmingham at 336-2302. If you live in Davidson, call the Davidson Town Hall.


Procedure For Presenting Certificate Of Appropriateness Applications At Meetings Of The Design Review Committee:

At each monthly meeting, the Design Review Committee schedules all Certificate of Appropriateness applications that have been requested in that time period. It is extremely important to proceed efficiently with the hearing of each application. Individuals speaking before the Committee should keep the following suggestions in mind:

1. Please be brief. Unless the Committee votes otherwise, you will have a maximum of five minutes to explain your application.  The Committee will already be familiar with the site and application request, and they will supply input during the review. The Committee will ask questions to understand the issues and arrive at a decision.

2. Avoid repetitious comments. This is the most time-consuming problem for the Committee.

3. The Committee Chairperson will attempt to move the hearing along efficiently.

The order of each case will be as follows:

A. All parties who plan to give testimony, pro or con, are to notify the HLC office three working days prior to the hearing by telephone or in writing. Sign the check-in page when you arrive.

B. HLC Staff will open with a background presentation for the project.

C. The appellant and Committee may question the Staff at this time.

D. The appellant will be given up to five minutes present his/her case.

E. The Committee may question the appellant.

F. The appellant may present witnesses which will be subject to questioning.

G. Other parties wishing to speak, pro or con, will be given up to three minutes to speak subject to the Chairperson's discretion.

H. The Committee and the appellant will be given an opportunity for rebuttal.

I. When necessary, the Committee will have Staff visit the site and present their views to the Committee.


The Secretary Of The Interior's Standards For Rehabilitation

1. A property shall be used for its historic purpose or be placed in a new use that requires minimal change to the defining characteristics of the building and its site and environment.

2. The historic character of a property shall be retained and preserved. The removal of historic materials or alteration of features and spaces that characterize a property shall be avoided.

3. Each property shall be recognized as a physical record of its time, place, and use. Changes that create a false sense of historical development, such as adding conjectural features or architectural elements from other buildings, shall not be undertaken.

4. Most properties change over time; those changes that have acquired historic significance in their own right shall be retained and preserved.

5. Distinctive features, finishes, and construction techniques or examples of craftsmanship that characterize a historic property shall be reserved.

6. Deteriorated historic features shall be repaired rather than replaced. Where the severity of deterioration requires replacement of a distinctive feature, the new feature shall match the old in design, color, texture, and other visual qualities and, where possible, materials. Replacement of missing features shall be substantiated by documentary, physical, or pictorial evidence.

7. Chemical or physical treatments, such as sandblasting, that cause damage to historic materials shall not be used. The surface cleaning of structures, if appropriate, shall be undertaken using the gentlest means possible.

8. Significant archeological resources affected by a project shall be protected and preserved. If such resources must be disturbed, mitigation measures shall be undertaken.

9. New additions, exterior alterations, or related new construction shall not destroy historic materials that characterize the property. The new work shall be differentiated from the old and shall be compatible with the massing, size, scale, and architectural features to protect the historic integrity of the property and its environment.

10. New additions and adjacent or related new construction shall be undertaken in such a manner that if removed in the future, the essential form and integrity of the historic property and its environment would be unimpaired.

Please follow as closely as possible the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings standards and issues.

rev. 12/12