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Historic Preservation banner

Franklin has many cherished historic resources, including downtown Franklin, historic neighborhoods and corridors, Civil War resources, and Harlinsdale Farm.  Franklin's Historic Preservation Program promotes the identification, evaluation, rehabilitation, adaptive reuse, and restoration of the City’s historic, architectural, and archaeological heritage.

Historic preservation zoning is a municipal planning tool used to protect the architectural character of Franklin’s local Historic Districts by managing growth and change.  The Historic Zoning Commission (HZC) reviews any proposed exterior alterations within the Historic Preservation Overlay (HPO) for compliance with the Franklin Historic District Design Guidelines.  This includes any exterior work requiring a building permit, as well as other items, such as:

  • Alteration/repair of existing buildings or structures that require a Building Permit
    (not routine maintenance);
  • New construction or addition to primary or accessory buildings;
  • Relocation;
  • Demolition of some or all of existing primary/accessory buildings or structures;
  • Signs and awnings;
  • Fences and walls;
  • Window replacement;
  • Siding (not routine maintenance or replacement in-kind); and
  • Roofing (not routine maintenance or replacement in-kind).
Certain minor alterations and installations may be reviewed administratively that do not substantially affect the exterior appearance of the property. These include:
  • Signage that complies with Franklin Zoning Ordinance;
  • Awning installation and replacement;
  • HVAC mechanical installation and related mechanical equipment screening; and
  • Fences that comply with the Franklin Zoning Ordinance.

Following the approval of a project, a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) or an Administrative COA is issued.  To find out more about the submitting an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness, check out the Application User Guide and to check if you are within the Historic District check this Historic Overlay Address Map