The City of Fort Lauderdale has a rich architectural heritage that comprises of three historic districts, 62 individually designated historic landmarks sites, and fourteen sites on the National Register of Historic Places (one additional is pending).
Historic Preservation Regulations
Historic Preservation in the City of Fort Lauderdale is regulated through the City’s Unified Land Development Regulations (ULDR) and through the Historic Preservation Element of the City’s Comprehensive Plan. In addition to the ULDR, decisions and recommendations by the Historic Preservation Board and the Historic Preservation Board Liaison are guided by the Historic Preservation Design Guidelines and the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards.
Historic Preservation Applications
Proposed work that affects an individually designated historic landmark or is within a designated historic district requires review by the City’s Historic Preservation Board Liaison to determine if the request can be approved administratively or requires review by the Historic Preservation Board.
If proposed work includes alterations, an addition, or new construction, the project will require the issuance of a Certificate of Appropriateness by the Historic Preservation Board. The process for designating new Historic Landmarks and Historic Districts within the City of Fort Lauderdale is outlined in ULDR Sections 47-24.11, 47-32, 47-16, and 47-17. Preservation within the City of Fort Lauderdale is further enhanced through the identification and designation of these representations of our past. Applications for designation must be submitted to the Historic Preservation Board, and must qualify under at least one criteria as listed within the ULDR Section 47-24.11.B.6.
Historic Landmarks - Interactive Online Map
The City Commission has given direction to City staff regarding potential amendments to the existing preservation ordinance as well as researching incentives that can be utilized to encourage property owners to apply for historic designations.
While there are numerous items to be addressed in updated the City's Unified Land Development Regulations (ULDR) related to historic preservation, it is important to address several elements within the existing framework to provide a solid foundation for the overall program. As the first initiative in updating the historic preservation ordinance, several amendments are proposed for implementation and have been reviewed at two Public Outreach meetings and with the Historic Preservation Board.
- View the PowerPoint presentation.
For additional information regarding this effort and the proposed amendments, please click on the links provided below:
- Commission Memo 18-182 Adjusted Timeline for Phase I Implementation
- Commission Memo 18-131 Historic Preservation Update Schedule
- Frequently Asked Questions
Status of Text Amendments:
PHASE I - UPDATES TO HISTORIC PRESERVATION ORDINANCE
The following amendment was approved on Second Reading at the City Commission Regular Meeting on Tuesday, July 9, 2019:
- Section 47-32. of the ULDR (Historic Preservation Board,decrease in number of board members and reduction in number of board members required to constitute a quorum)
The following amendments were approved approved on Second Reading at the City Commission Regular Meeting on Thursday, September 12, 2019.
- Section 47-24.11. of the ULDR (Historic Preservation Ordinance)
- Sections 47-27.7 and 47-27.8. of the ULDR (Noticing for Historic Preservation)
- Section 47-3.6.; Section 47-16.5.; Section 47-16.6.; Section 47-16.23.; Section 47-17.4.; Section 47-17.5.; Section 47-17.6.; Section 47-36.1.; Section 47-36.2. of the ULDR (Renumbering due to changes in above sections)
PHASE II - INCENTIVES
The following amendment was approved on Second Reading at the City Commission Regular Meeting on October 2, 2019.
Two additional incentives including a waiver to promote and encourage preservation of historic resources as well as a tax exemption for commercial properties are proposed. These amendments were reviewed by the Historic Preservation Board at the December 2, 2019, meeting (meeting agenda, results, and back-up materials for this item are located here) and are now scheduled for the January 15, 2020, Planning and Zoning Board meeting. The meeting agenda and back-up materials for this item are located here. These incentives were passed on First Reading at the City Commission Regular Meeting on February 18, 2020, and is scheduled for Second Reading on March 3, 2020.
- Section 47-24.11.G. of the ULDR (Property Tax Exemption for designated local historic resources used for certain commercial or nonprofit purposes)
- Section 47-24.11.H. of the ULDR (Waivers for historic preservation) and Section 47-3.2. of the ULDR (Nonconforming structure)
- Section 47-27.8. of the ULDR (Noticing requirements for applications for certificates of appropriateness, waivers, and economic hardship
An additional incentive to implement a Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs) Program is tentatively scheduled for review by the Historic Preservation Board at the April 6, 2020, meeting. The meeting agenda and back-up materials for this item will be posted here closer to the date of the meeting.
An updated survey of the Sailboat Bend Historic District (SBHD) was conducted to identify any changes that have occurred within the district since the last Architectural Resource Survey was completed in 2009. It is typical to reassess historic districts periodically, usually every ten years, to maintain an inventory of designated historic resources which is a requirement through the designation of the City of Fort Lauderdale as a Certified Local Government (CLG).
In order to implement the findings of this resurvey, the following objectives are proposed:
- Adjust the boundaries of the existing historic district to exclude properties fronting Broward Boulevard and a portion of the Planned Unit Development (PUD) zoning district; and
- Assign a “Contributing” or “Non-Contributing” status to all structures within the SBHD; and
- Amend Section 47-17., SBHD Ordinance, of the Unified Land Development Regulations (ULDR).
In accordance with ULDR Section 47-24.7.B.9, Amendments and Rescissions, the proposal for the modifications to the existing boundary lines, the first phase of the proposed updates to the SBHD, was heard by the Historic Preservation Board (HPB) on January 6, 2020, for their recommendation to the City Commission. The meeting agenda, results, and back-up materials for this item are located here. A Communication to the City Commission from the HPB was heard at the January 21, 2020, City Commission Conference Meeting. At that meeting, the City Commission gave direction to staff to not move forward with the modification to the boundary of the Sailboat Bend Historic District at this time and it will no longer appear on the February 19, 2020, Planning and Zoning Board (PZB) agenda.
A proposal for assignment of “Contributing” or “Non-Contributing” status to all structures within the SBHD and further proposed amendments to ULDR Section 47-17, SBHD, to align text with recent changes to ULDR Section 47-24.11, Historic designation of landmarks, landmark site or buildings and certificate of appropriateness as well as to update the material and design guidelines for the SBHD are are anticipated within the next year.
- Resurvey of the Sailboat Bend Historic District Frequently Asked Questions
- Commission Memo 19-078 Historic Preservation Ordinance Updates - Phase Three - Updated Survey of SBHD
- December 11, 2019, Presentation to the Sailboat Bend Civic Association
Historic Preservation applications are administrated by the Urban Design and Planning Division, located at the Department of Sustainable Development, 700 NW 19th Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33311.
If you have questions about Historic Preservation in Fort Lauderdale, please contact:
Trisha Logan, AICP, LEED Green Associate, Urban Planner III, Historic Preservation Board Liaison
Urban Design and Planning Division
Tel: (954) 828-7101