Certificate of Appropriateness

A Certificate of Appropriateness is a document issued by the Historic Preservation Commission that approves of certain modifications to Local Historic Landmarks and properties within Local Historic DistrictsApplications for a Certificate of Appropriateness can be filed to the Department of Planning & Community Development.

As detailed in Montclair Code § 347-136, modifications to these properties that require a Certificate of Appropriateness include the following:

  • Demolition or construction, either by addition or alteration
  • Relocation of a structure
  • Change in the exterior elevation or any improvement by addition, alteration or replacement
  • Any new construction of a principal or accessory structure
  • Any change in existing, or addition of new signage or exterior lighting

The following modifications to these properties DO NOT require a Certificate of Appropriateness:

  • Changes to interior
  • Changes not visible to the public, other than relocation or demolition
  • Repair or exact replacement of any existing improvement, provided that the work does not alter the exterior appearance.  The following are permitted repairs:
    • Identical replacement of existing windows and doors
    • Repairs of existing windows and doors and the installation of storm doors and windows that do not change their design, scale or appearance.
    • Maintenance and repair of existing roofing materials involving no change in the design, scale or appearance of the structure
    • Structural repairs which do not alter the exterior appearance
    • Replacement of existing clapboards, shingles or other siding with identical material.
    • Maintenance and repair of existing clapboards, shingles or other siding (including masonry) involving no change in the design, scale or appearance
    • Exterior or interior painting

However, any proposed modifications to a Local Historic Landmark or a property within a Local Historic District that is part of an Application for Development to either the Planning Board or the Zoning Board of Adjustment, is exempt from the requirement of a Certificate of Appropriateness, as noted in Montclair Code § 347-136(A).  In these instances, the Application will be referred to the Historic Preservation Commission for advice to the respective Board to assist in decision-making, pursuant to Montclair Code § 347-142.