Standard Design Guidelines Update

Louisville is nationally recognized for its extensive collection of distinctive historic resources that are enjoyed by residents, business owners, and visitors as links to the city’s heritage, and that set the stage for a vibrant future. Preserving these historic assets is essential to Louisville Metro’s well-being, identity, and character. As such, Louisville Metro Council and the Historic Landmarks & Preservation Districts Commission has developed clear policies for protecting its unique historic areas. This includes maintaining written design guidelines for a variety of actions related to properties within Louisville’s locally-designated preservation districts and for individual landmarks

Exterior development in most of Louisville Metro's local preservation districts is reviewed under the Standard Design Guidelines. The last review and update of the Guidelines was carried out in 1997. Since the last update, there have been rapid advances in sustainable technologies and building materials. Additionally, preservation methodologies have evolved since 1997, as recognized by the National Park Service in its approach to rehabilitation of historic buildings. The Commission acknowledges the need to ensure that historic properties are able to take advantage of these green options while retaining historic character. Additionally, the integration of new building materials and technologies in a sensitive manner is a goal of the Commission. The Guidelines need to address current approaches to successfully incorporating new development within local preservation districts and landmarks.


Draft Standard Design Guidelines Document

The Commission has recognized the need for revisions to the Standard Design Guidelines, establishing an update as a primary goal for 2020. A CLG grant was awarded to Louisville Metro in 2015 to support the update. In 2016, a consultant (Nore Winter and Associates) was selected to prepare Draft Guidelines in consultation with Planning & Design Services staff.

The Draft Guidelines are provided as a series of individual chapters that address a variety of topics regarding changes to historic structures. They promote the community’s vision for preservation by guiding appropriate stewardship of historic resources and compatible redevelopment in local preservation districts. Serving as an update to the existing Guidelines, the Draft Guidelines continue preservation policies that were in place, clarify provisions, and utilize many of the same illustrations.

If you have any questions regarding the Draft Guidelines, the approval process, or appropriate preservation techniques, please contact Planning & Design Services at (502) 574-6230.

View or download the most recent version of the Draft Guidelines.


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Commission Review of the Draft Standard Design Guidelines

A subcommittee of the Commission is being formed to review the Draft Guidelines. Planning & Design Services is currently establishing a meeting schedule for the subcommittee and will make the schedule available to the public when finalized. If you have any questions or are interested in receiving notice of these upcoming public meetings please email Savannah Darr.


Public Comments

It is the intent of the Commission to gather input from the from residents and property owners in Louisville Metro's local preservation districts, as well as the general public. After reviewing the Draft Guidelines, you may provide your comments on the form below.

Fill out the online form.

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