Arlington seal logo

Want your Arlington neighborhood – or somebody else’s – to be designated a local historic district? You may soon have to pay for the consideration.

County Board members in April will hold a public hearing on a staff proposal to charge a fee, ranging from $250 to $1,000, for requests to enact historic districts.

The fee would pay a portion of the staff cost for researching and conducting public outreach for consideration of districts, said Alexus Guilliod of the county government’s Department of Community Planning, Housing and Development.

The Arlington government established its first local historic districts in 1978, and the roster has grown to 40 currently. The designation gives the Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board authority over exterior changes to properties within a district.

County officials say generally there are one to three requests for historic districts per year, and anticipate revenue of $500 in the first year if the fee schedule is adopted. The exact charge to applicants would depend on the number of properties in a proposed district.

Designation as a local district is different from inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places and Virginia Landmarks Register, which are honorary designations that do not give governments any additional regulatory power over properties.

The public hearing is slated for April 5 and, if enacted, the fee would go into effect July 1.