A certificate of appropriateness (CoA) is required for all proposed exterior alterations, new construction and demolition within a local historic district, with the exception of routine maintenance, repairs and replacements using the same materials, interior alterations and paint colors. The CoA process involves public meetings with two advisory groups:
- The Design Review Committee (DRC) is comprised of the architects and designers who serve on the Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board (HALRB). The committee offers free technical and design advice to applicants and their contractors to fine-tune and finalize CoA requests. The DRC does not vote on applications; it only informs the HALRB as to whether the applications are appropriate for the historic district. Depending on the scope of the project, some applications may need multiple visits to the DRC. The DRC determines whether an application is ready to be submitted to the full HALRB.
- Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board (HALRB) reviews and renders decisions to approve or deny the CoA application.
Many CoA applications are approved in one review cycle, though some may require additional DRC meetings to resolve complex design issues. One of the primary goals of the HALRB is to work closely with property owners and their design teams to achieve suitable designs that meet their current needs while respecting the building’s historic character. Historic Preservation Program staff and HALRB members strive to help applicants achieve an appropriate design solution. However, as stated in the Zoning Ordinance, owners do have the right to appeal an HALRB denial to the County Board.
CoA applications must be submitted online.
- You must complete a Certificate of Appropriateness (CoA) Application in Permit Arlington.
- From the Create drop-down menu, select Zoning Application.
- View Permit Arlington Help for assistance with the online system.
- CoA applications must be submitted by 5 p.m. on each month’s due date. The due date is usually the penultimate Wednesday of the month, but there are exceptions. Make sure to check the filing schedule immediately below. Completed applications will be reviewed the following month.
- CoA Filing Schedule 2019-2020
Meeting Month Filing Deadline DRC Meeting HALRB Meeting October 9/18 10/2 10/16 November 10/23 11/6 11/20 December 11/20 12/4 12/18
Meeting Month Filing Deadline DRC Meeting HALRB Meeting January 12/23/2019 1/8 1/22 February 1/22 2/5 2/19 March 2/19 3/4 3/18 April 3/18 4/1 4/15 May 4/22 5/6 5/20 June 5/20 6/3 6/17 July 6/17 7/1 7/15 August 7/22 8/5 8/19 September 8/19 9/2 9/16 October 9/23 10/7 10/21 November 10/21 11/4 11/18 December 11/18 12/2 12/16
- Submission requirements vary: view project-specific details.
- The Permit Arlington system will prompt you to upload your application materials when you fill out your CoA application.
- All documentation (including photos) must be sized 11 in. x 17 in. or 24 in. x 36 in. (NOT 8.5 in. x 11 in.).
- Upload your documentation under the “Plans and Drawings” banner (NOT the “Application Documents and Response Letters” banner).
- Consult detailed instructions for submitting Plans and Drawings.
- Once the CoA has been approved and you are ready to begin work, please alert the Historic Preservation Inspector at 703-228-3818 or email@example.com about scheduling an inspection.