Ordinances and Permits

Construction and Renovation in the Historic District
The HPC is here to help! The role of the HPC is to ascertain that your project meets the preservation guidelines for work within the historic district. Any renovations or construction in the district  must include a review by the HPC. We have information here to help you, and more importantly, we are here to help you. To help you understand how the guidelines work, the Town of Bennington has produced Time and Place in Bennington: A Handbook for the Central Bennington Historic District. Since the Historic Preservation Commission is an advisory commission only, we will make a recommendation to the Development Review Board to either approve or deny your application. In certain cases, we may ask for more information before we can make a complete recommendation.

Renovation Guidelines
Time and Place in Bennington is both an education resource about the historic assets of Downtown Bennington and a guidebook for renovations within the District. This is the document that the Historic Preservation uses to determine if the proposed changes to buildings are appropriate.

Both the Bennington Town Plan and the Bennington Land Use and Development Regulations  support the preservation ethic of Bennington.

Section 4.4 of the Bennington Town Plan lays out Bennington’s commitment to managing Bennington’s historic resources. Section 4.5 details Bennington’s Historic Preservation Policies.

Sections 3.1-3.4 of Town of Bennington Land Use and Development Regulations (2004) establishes the Historic Bennington Design Review District (page 26-28). The purpose of the district is to “protect historic resources within a defined area of downtown Bennington, and to encourage new construction which will reinforce the best qualities of the existing character within Bennington’s core through both traditions and innovative design approaches.” (page 64) Details of the Historic Central Bennington Design Review District are spelled out in Table 3.19 (Pages 64-67)

The Design Review Process

How do I know if my project needs to be reviewed by the HPC?

Submission Guidelines

Any exterior project in the Design Review District must be reviewed by the HPC.

Paint Color Changes

If you are located within the Historic District and you wish to change the paint color of your building, please contact the Town Zoning Administrator at 442-1037. The Town will help you through an informal process to find an appropriate color from the approved color palette for the Historic District.

Façade Changes
If you wish to make any changes to the exterior facade of your building located within the Historic District, you will need to complete an Application for Building and Zoning Permit, available on the permits page. If it is a complex change, we recommend meeting with the Zoning Administrator (442-1037) prior to submitting your application. In designing your exterior facade changes, we strongly encourage you to review the design guidelines. We also encourage you to include as much of the supplemental information as possible in your application to help the HPC and DRB understand your project.

If you would like to install a new sign or change an existing sign, you will need to complete a Town of Bennington Sign Permit Application available on the permits page. We encourage you to review the Design Guidelines for Signs and include as much supplemental information as possible in your application to help the HPC and DRB understand your project.

If you would like to demolish a building anywhere in Bennington and that building is listed on the Vermont Sites and Structures Survey for the Town of Bennington or is in the Central Bennington Historic District, the demolition is prohibited unless you are able to meet several requirements laid out in Section 4.2 of the Land Use and Development Regulations available on our building and zoning ordinances page. Please contact Bennington’s Zoning Administrator for more information at 442-1037.