Historic Preservation Office Review of Alteration or New Construction

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Tempe Historic Preservation Office (HPO) provides design review for exterior changes to properties listed in the Tempe Historic Property Register to help ensure changes are compatible with the historic character of the historic property or district. This review applies to individually listed properties or properties located in designated Historic Districts. Courtesy review of historic properties not listed in the Tempe Historic Property Register is available by appointment. There is no cost to property owners for HPO design review. Please contact us at 480-350-8870 or send email to joe_nucci@tempe.gov to arrange consultation or to determine if HPO review is appropriate for your project.

Projects Not Reviewed – Some projects require building permits but do not require HPO review. Installation, replacement or repair of gas, water, or sewer lines and some mechanical, electrical, or plumbing work can be permitted without HPO review. BUILDING PERMIT ACTIVITIES THAT DO NOT REQUIRE HPO REVIEW

Certificate of No Effect – HPO issues a Certificate of No Effect for minor work which does not materially change the historic character of the property. Restoration work and window replacement in-kind, rear patios and patio covers, and most work located entirely behind the main building or that will not be visible from the street right-of-way can be approved over the counter by HPO with a Certificate of No Effect. PROJECTS ELIGIBLE FOR CERTIFICATES OF NO EFFECT FROM HPO

Certificate of Appropriateness – A Certificate of Appropriateness may be applied for when work is proposed that will materially change, alter, diminish, eliminate or affect the historic or architectural character of the property in any way. This process only applies to exterior work. Plans for interior work do not require review or approval from the Tempe HPO. However, in some cases, the Building Official may refer you to the Historic Preservation Office for this determination. Tempe HPO determines which certification will apply and Applicants are encouraged to consult Tempe HPO prior to submitting an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness. Guidance for preparing plans and applying for a Certificate of Appropriateness with HPO. CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS APPLICATION

Link to Historic Preservation Commission Submittal Deadlines and Requirements 


Link to Tempe Building Safety Permit Issuance & Plan Review


Link to the Tempe Historic Preservation Ordinance from the City Clerk


Link to the Tempe City Code from the City Clerk