Historic Resources Committee

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Renaissance Schallaburg Figures in a facade

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The mission of the Historic Resources Committee (HRC) is to identify, understand, and preserve architectural heritage, both nationally and internationally. HRC is engaged in promoting the role of the historic architect within the profession through the development of information and knowledge among members, allied professional organizations, and the public.

  • 1.  Question about Historic Preservation Tax Credits for modern ribbon window replacement

    Posted 02-24-2022 11:57 AM
    Has anyone successfully obtained tax credits for a window replacement project where you had a ribbon of windows including operable sashes, and you had to change sash sizes to meet building code requirements?

    The building is a 1960s apartment building, a contributing building to a recently listed district.  The windows are in a continuous ribbon across the facade, in a repeating pattern of fixed and operable sashes.  The windows are original, single pane, aluminum and no longer repairable.

    The apartments rely on the windows for ventilation; there is no central ventilation system, and the floor-to-floor heights are too low to add one.  To meet building code requirements for ventilation and energy efficiency, we will have to increase the size of the operable sashes.  Typically this is a no-no for tax credits. 

    If you have experience with a similar project, please tell me how you went about it, and your successes and failures.

    Thank you!

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    Amy Hasselman AIA
    KONTEXT Architects LLC
    Evansville WI
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  • 2.  RE: Question about Historic Preservation Tax Credits for modern ribbon window replacement

    Posted 02-25-2022 05:31 PM
    Amy,
    In the past, we have used an exception in the Energy Conservation Code that  provided, in effect, that conformance with specific provisions of the  code were not required if the design  professional [or others specified in the code] provided a report/statement that compliance with the provision would damage the historic integrity of the building [I'm paraphrasing liberally and leaving out important qualifications, but  that is the gist of it].  We have, however,  seen some local code amendments negate this exception. So your challenge is to see if such a provision exists/survives within the codes in your location.

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    Norman Alston, FAIA
    Principal
    Norman Alston Architects
    Dallas, Texas
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  • 3.  RE: Question about Historic Preservation Tax Credits for modern ribbon window replacement

    Posted 02-25-2022 05:35 PM
    Yes, you get hold of the Historic District Coordinator in you District and or the State Historic Office and get a way past the new code…
    based on this is a Historic building in a District.
    You do not have to meet the code in certain areas because of the Historic Status.


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  • 4.  RE: Question about Historic Preservation Tax Credits for modern ribbon window replacement

    Posted 02-28-2022 09:34 AM
    I agree that your local or state historic preservation office is a good place to start. You should also review the relevant codes for escape windows from bedrooms, which may or may not be required. The windows in the photo look too narrow to comply.

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    Steve Davis AIA
    Canizaro Cawthon Davis
    Jackson MS
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  • 5.  RE: Question about Historic Preservation Tax Credits for modern ribbon window replacement
    Best Answer

    Posted 02-28-2022 02:35 PM
    Every rehabiltation tax incentive project is different; what may have worked for one project cannot be relied upon as precedent for another.  My recommendation is to explore all the ways that could be pursued to meet code requirements, analyze the technical and economic feasibility of each as well as their visual effect, and ask to consult with your SHPO in a preliminary review where you can explain the challenge you are facing, the options you have researched, and your preferred and alternative options.

    _____________________________

    John A. Burns, FAIA, FAPT, LEED® AP
    Chief Appeals Officer, Cultural Resources
    Historic Preservation Tax Incentives Program
    National Park Service
    1849 C Street NW, Mail Stop 7508
    Washington, DC 20240
    Voice:  202-354-2118


    The National Park Service cares for special places 
    saved by the American people so that all may 
    experience our heritage.

    EXPERIENCE YOUR AMERICA





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