NewsLocal News


Commissioners consider new historic preservation rules

Posted at 11:21 PM, Jun 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-16 23:21:22-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Homeowner Casey Rychlik has spent the last year fighting to have his home removed from the historic preservation registry.

It's a move that's being met with some pushback from those concerned about the precedent it could set for other historic properties.

"It's not a decision I feel great about having to make," said Rychlik.

Rychlik's house on Martin Luther King Blvd is one of the last standing houses amid growing development.

"The only other old building on the block was demolished about two years ago," he said.

Removing the Historic Preservation from the home, among other benefits, could make it easier for him to sell. But the city did not have a formal process for removing properties from the registry, something commissioner Jeremy Matlow said is with good reason.

"The decision to list a property on a local historic register is a lifelong decision," said Matlow. "So, as far as hopping on and hopping off, that's not a register at all, in my opinion, if the criteria are not strict enough so once you make that commitment, you're committing to seeing that property through."

Agreeing with Matlow, Delaitre Hollinger, president of the National Association for the Preservation of African American History and culture said, "This sets a very dangerous precedent moving forward in our community, especially when we're seeing so much development, so much gentrification taking place. Actually approving the removal of a property from this very coveted local register of historic places, I think, is really going to take us down a path that we don't want to go."

Commissioners voted 3 to 2 to move forward with removing the property from preservation.

City leaders are now also working to develop an ordinance to properly review additional removal requests.