City Council delays vote on
Downtown Commercial Zoning changes
The agenda for City Councilâ€™s most recent meeting, held February 11th, included several proposed zoning changes for the Downtown Commercial District. One of these was particularly disturbing to us here at HFFI, and so we decided to engage local residents and voice our concerns to Council.
The amendment in question called for an increase in the cityâ€™s 50-foot height restriction for properties located along the west side of Sophia Street. Under the provision, the height of new structures would be measured from floodplain levels rather than the existing grade, thereby raising possible height limits by 7 to 13 feet and paving the way for new structures potentially as tall as 63 feet.
To address this threat to our historic downtown district, HFFI circulated an online petition
prior to the meeting, requesting that Council postpone its vote on the changes until a more extensive analysis of the potential impact could be conducted.
Our petition was a success!
Council heard our message loud and clear! We love our historic downtown
and tall, out-of-scale buildings are not welcome! After much discussion, City Council opted to delay its vote on the proposed zoning changes
until its next meeting in March, and to leave the building height issue off the table indefinitely. HFFI will continue monitoring this situation and keep everyone informed should any additional action be needed.
For more information see the February 10th
and February 11th Free Lance-Star
A special thank you to the 394 people
who signed our petition and shared their concerns with us and Council. Your voices were heard!
Time to Renew!
Calling all HFFI membersâ€¦ Itâ€™s that time of year again! We need your support in 2014!
Your membership contributions (which are tax deductible!) are vital to our efforts. They help support a variety of preservation-related activities, including managing our 42 easement properties in the downtown historic district, advocating for the cityâ€™s adoption of preservation-friendly policies and planning tools, and the planning of events and tours that celebrate Fredericksburgâ€™s rich history and promote downtown revitalization.
Not yet a member of HFFI? Please consider joining us and support our efforts
to preserve the unique historic places and character of our community.
You can join or renew your membership online
, or you can mail a check to our offices
. Our members receive a variety of discounts and benefits, and your contribution is tax deductible! Click here
to learn more.
February 23rd - Open House
Please come by the Lewis Store (1200 Caroline Street) on Sunday, February 23rd, to join us for our 2014 kickoff event!
We will be hosting an Open House
from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Local history teacher Barbra Anderson will present a talk and slideshow on the 20th-century history of Lafayette Boulevard
at 2:00 p.m. Itâ€™s sure to be packed full of interesting stories and fun facts about the original path of US Route 1.
In addition, the second installment of our Vintage Route 1 Exhibit
Series will be on display. Guests will enjoy new exhibits focused on three important themes from Fredericksburgâ€™s 20th-century past: Lafayette Boulevardâ€™s Changing Streetscape
, the African-American Civil Rights Movement
, and Hotels & Lodging in Fredericksburg
If you are new to HFFI, then this will also be a wonderful opportunity to learn more about our group and what we do. Membership renewals will be accepted
and the latest book, The Circle Unbroken: Civil War Letters of the Knox Family of Fredericksburg
, will be on sale.
We look forward to seeing you this Sunday