After more than a year and a half of meetings, revisions, and public hearings, the Cooper-Young Historic Overlay application’s fate will be decided when the Memphis City Council votes to approve or deny it at a public hearing in early March. The application will receive three readings at Council meetings, tentatively scheduled for Feb. 6, Feb. 20 and March 6. That final meeting will be a public hearing, including commentary, and is when City Council members will vote on the application.
To view the proposed Cooper-Young Historic Overlay District guidelines and the proposed district boundaries, visit cooperyoung.org/proposed-landmarks. Because Cooper-Young is an eclectic, diverse community, we proposed the least restrictive guidelines out of the guidelines for the 13 existing historic districts in Memphis. Referred to as “skinny” guidelines by one OPD employee, the only alterations that are covered in the proposed CY guidelines are:
- New construction
- Habitable additions to existing structures
- Non-habitable additions to existing structures
- Outbuildings and new fencing (this does not include standard backyard privacy fencing)
If you are not doing any of those alterations to your house, the guidelines do not apply, and no fees or applications for a Certificate of Appropriateness (permit) are required. The guidelines do not apply to routine maintenance, change of paint color, installation of solar panels or roof, window, and door replacements, among other things.
Those who wish to speak for or against the proposal are encouraged to attend the meetings and voice your opinions. If you can’t attend, you may email or call Brian Bacchus (email@example.com or 901-576-4241) at the Office of Planning & Development (OPD) stating the reason(s) for your support or opposition to the request. — Stephanie Gonzalez