Friday, January 28, 2022

Planning Board discusses Historical Preservation

Ms. Betsy Perdichizzi.

Ms. Betsy Perdichizzi.

By Val Simon

Due to one man’s mission of building a mausoleum on the island, the Planning Board will consider whether to recommend a new ordinance governing historical designations, or whether to move toward an interlocal agreement with Collier County. During a presentation by Kris Van Lengen, City Planner, the Planning Board learned the Comprehensive Plan for the city had laid out a 2005 deadline to either create an interlocal agreement with the county’s Archeological and Historical Preservation Board, or form a local board. Kris listed a few positive attributes of such a policy which complies with the National Registry of Historic Properties such as tax credits, grants and even potential local credits.

On the reverse side, once designated historical, there is a risk of building code restrictions, delays in permitting and a question on how development rights get restored on the property in the wake of destruction such as hurricane damage. What happens to property rights for subsequent purchasers of the property? As an example, would designation as a historical structure have limited renovations at the Old Marco Inn?

Ms. Betsy Perdichizzi spoke to the board as a six year director of the Collier County’s Historical Preservation Board. She noted in the past, the county would have governed renovations of structures designated historical. Since cityhood, there has not been a procedure or policy in place.

The board will continue discussion on whether modifying an interlocal agreement with the county giving more local control would be more advantageous than creating a new local board with city council having final authority. Included in the discussion is whether to make the designation voluntary or compulsory and a review of property rights versus the preservation of the property. The Board will review county ordinances and Craig Woodward, President of the Marco Island Historical Society, will be consulted.

The board requested a listing of all structures in the area designated historical. Kris will supply such a list for the entire county so the board has a reference to compare local sites. He also noted that during renovations made to Marek’s, a certified archeologist was onsite during construction to oversee and disturbance to the soil.

The board noted that any ruling in this matter would have no bearing on a vote for a mausoleum.

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