Obtaining a Certificate of Appropriateness
Exterior work on properties with a local historic designation must secure a Certificate of Appropriateness (CoA) from the Madison Landmarks Commission prior to acquiring a building permit or commencing work. All new project submittals should be emailed to email@example.com
Electronic Submittal Format
• Individual email cannot exceed 20 MB
• Present in usable file format
• Label email attachments: “Site Plan 1 of 3”, “…2 of 3”, etc.
• If dividing emails to keep under file size limit: “Landmarks Application for 123 Elm Street - email 1 of 4”, “…2 of 4”, etc.)
Standards for Review
• Landmarks: Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation.
• Local Historic Districts: District Standards.
Staff will be in contact regarding administrative approvals for simple projects, which need pictures of existing conditions, a narrative scope of work, and any supporting materials or product specifications. Projects that require Landmarks Commission approval need to meet all submittal requirements on page 2 of the Landmarks Commission Application.
While smaller projects can be approved administratively, larger projects must be reviewed by the commission. Please see the commission schedule for submittal and meeting dates.
Walk Through of Process
For more information on how to obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness, please see the video below:
What is a Certificate of Appropriateness? Go to second 50
How to fill out the Landmarks Commission form? Go to minute 2:24
Administrative Approval process? Go to minute 6:00
What standards are we using for designated landmarks? Go to minute 7:41
What is contained with it the Historic District Standards? Go to minute 10:00
Landmarks and Local Historic Districts
Designating a Landmark or Local Historic District
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the nation's list of historically significant cultural resources. It recognizes properties, including archaeological sites, that are significant not only nationally, but also regionally and locally. There are many National Register Historic Districts and numerous individually designated properties in Madison.
National Register designation is honorary and includes financial incentives in the form of two kinds of tax credits; one for the rehabilitation of income-producing property and one for the rehabilitation of single-family residences. Visit the Wisconsin State Historical Society website for more information about these tax credits. The Madison Landmarks Commission is not involved in management of the National Register program, but encourages property owners to explore that program.
Landmarks Commission Application Information
Historic Preservation Planner