Owner Consent Not Required for Designation

If a community can designate a local landmark without the consent of the property’s owner, it can protect a significant place that is threatened with demolition or excessive alteration. Concerned advocates can submit landmark nominations in an effort to protect significant structures in their communities.

Many important places remain standing today because local advocates nominated them for local designation when they were threatened with demolition.

Some jurisdictions have historic preservation ordinances that do require owner consent for landmark designation. This requirement has a profound effect on the effectiveness of an ordinance as a preservation advocacy tool, hindering the community’s ability to protect significant structures when they become threatened.

In jurisdictions with such an ordinance, preservation advocates cannot use landmark designation as a way to protect a threatened building. A property owner seeking to redevelop a site will certainly not consent to the designation of a building that they want to demolish.