Design Review Board
The Design Review Board is a board of members appointed by the City of Florence City Council that includes design professionals, downtown merchants, and City residents. The board was formed to administer the City of Florence Design Guidelines, which play an important role in the redevelopment of Downtown and outline optimum urban design principles used to aesthetically enhance the Downtown Redevelopment District.
Any proposed project taking place in a Downtown Overlay District must contact the City of Florence Planning Office to determine whether they need to make application to appear before the Design Review Board. Projects reviewed by the board include:
- Design concept and layout of new construction
- Exterior renovation of existing structures within an overlay district
- Demolition of any structure within an overlay district
- Addition and/or replacement of exterior business signage
- Removal and/or change of landscaping
The goal of the design guidelines is to build a framework within which builders, developers, property owners, business owners, and City government can play their part in revitalizing Downtown Florence, secure in their knowledge that their individual contributions will reinforce the whole. Design guidelines ensure that regional and local character are preserved downtown, that materials are appropriate for their application on historic structures, and that new development is neither an inauthentic recreation of a prior time and place nor an open-air mall. In addition, the guidelines expand upon and explain the design intent previously completed Master Plans to ensure that new development and restoration of existing structures will create a new, dynamic, harmonious, and unique downtown of which all citizens can be proud.
The Design Review Board meets on the second Wednesday of each month at 2:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers at the City Center, 324 W. Evans Street. Applications to the DRB are made through the City of Florence Planning Department.
In addition to Design Guidelines, the City of Florence has also adopted a Maintenance and Appearance Code for properties located within the Downtown Historic District (H-1). The purpose of the Code is to provide a practical method whereby buildings or structures, which diminish property values or detract from the appropriate appearance of the Florence Downtown Historic District, may be required to be repaired.
The Maintenance and Appearance Codes for Downtown Florence can be found in the City of Florence’s Code of Ordinances, Chapter 4, Article 1, Section 4-3 through Section 4-10, or online here.