NYC Landmarks Restoring Architectural Features Guidelines

Queen Anne houses on Union Street in Park Slope's original historic district. Photo by Cate Corcoran


    Is your house landmarked? Hold off before you paint that door or replace the windows!

    You may need to check with the Landmarks Preservation Commission before making changes to your property. But don’t worry — routine repairs do not need approval, as long as they do not alter the appearance of the building.

    The Commission has published a 31-page guide to helping homeowners repair, restore and renovate their buildings and navigate the LPC. Below, some excerpts and a link to the full guide:

    Title: NYC Landmarks, Restoring Architectural Features – Application Guidelines

    (Includes work required under Local Law 11/8)

    Restoration and Repair of Masonry and Other Wall Surfaces

    • Brownstone and Limestone Repair and Restoration
    • Terra Cotta, Granite, Cast Stone and Other Masonry
    • Cast Iron
    • Wood: Clapboard and Shingle Wall Surfaces

    Painting Roof Repair and Rehabilitation

    Door Replacement and Restoration Stoop, Fence, Handrail and Related Details Restoration and Replacement

    Substitute Materials

    Restoring Architectural Features

    An architectural feature refers to a distinctive physical element that helps define the character of a historic building, such as:

    • Balconies
    • Cornices
    • Cupolas
    • Decorative Roofs
    • Door openings and enframements
    • Railings
    • Re-creating Historic Storefronts
    • Siding
    • Stoops
    • Window openings and enframements

    Need a professional opinion? Try Brownstoner Services, where you can talk to a concierge (it’s free) or browse our community of pros. >>

    When LPC Approvals Are Required

    Permits are required for all repair and restoration work.

    A staff-level permit will be issued if the restoration work:

    • Is based on documentation of the historic condition (see page 2 of this chapter)
    • Will not cause the removal of significant historic fabric that has been added over time, and reflects the history and development of the building, structure or site

    You can read the entire 31 page NYC Guidelines for Restoring Architectural Features >>


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