Historic Preservation in Belleair
Now is an exciting time for historic preservation in Belleair! The Town was recently awarded a $50,000 grant from the State of Florida and is currently working with a contractor (Johnson, Mirmiran & Thompson Inc. (JMT)) to study the pre-1967 homes, buildings, and structures in town. JMT will also interview local residents and submit a final report with further preservation recommendations to staff and elected officials.
Please join us on Tuesday, July 24 at 4:00 pm in Town Hall to see JMT's final presentation and to celebrate our small town's big history. Also, be sure to check back here in the coming months for a digital copy of JMT's report.
How Many Structures in Belleair are Currently Designated as Historic?
There are 21 homes in Belleair that are on our local historic register. These homes are diverse in style and history, and are mostly spread through the center of Belleair and in the north end of Town. Click here to see and download a map of Belleair's historic homes.
How Does a Structure become Designated as Historic?
Residents may apply to put their home on Belleair's historic preservation register by completing a Historic Designation Application and submitting it to the Town for approval by both the Historic Preservation Board and the Commission.
In order to qualify for preservation, the nominated property, building, structure, or area must be at least 50 years old and embody at least one of the following criteria, to the discretion of the Historic Preservation Board:
- Its character, interest or value as part of the development, heritage, or cultural characteristics of the town, county, state or nation
- Its location as a site of significant local, county, state or national event
- Its identification with a person or persons who significantly contributed to the development of the town, county, state or nation
- Its embodiment of distinguishing characteristics of an architectural style valuable for the study of a period, type, method of construction or use of indigenous materials
- Its identification as the work of a master builder, craftsman, designer, engineer, architect, landscape architect or planner whose individual work has influenced the development of the town, county, state or nation
- Its embodiment of elements of design, detailing, materials or craftsmanship that render it architecturally significant
- Its embodiment of design elements that make it structurally or architecturally innovative
- Its unique location or singular physical characteristics that make it an established or familiar visual feature
- Its suitability for preservation or restoration
- Where the interior of a building or structure is designated, the designation shall include a finding designating the specific portions of the interior that make it suitable for designation and a finding that the interior is accessible to the public as a common area in the normal course of the building's use
Frequently Asked Questions
Can A Historic Home Be Renovated?
Yes, historic homes may be renovated, and often are in order to meet modern standards. However, historic property owners must first receive approval for renovation via either a Standard Certificate of Appropriateness Application or a Special Certificate of Appropriateness Application to ensure that any renovations retain the historic integrity of the structure.
Click here to download the process for pursuing a certificate of appropriateness.
What Incentives Are Offered for Historic Properties?
Aside from a general increase of property value, owning a historic home can have its benefits. Primarily, the Town offers a tax abatement program for historic property owners who renovate their homes in ways that preserve and honor the property's historic integrity.
Can I Remove My Home from the Historic Register?
Yes, property owners may remove their homes from the Town's historic register, and must complete this form and receive approval from the Historic Preservation Board and the Commission in order to do so.