What is a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA)?
A Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) is a document approving work on local historic landmarks or properties in local historic districts based on consistency with the applicable review criteria. When changes are proposed to properties within local districts or to landmarks, the proposed changes are reviewed against the Local Historic Properties Review Criteria. If the proposed changes are consistent with the Criteria, either staff or the Historic Preservation Commission will issue the COA. A COA is required prior to the issuance of a building permit and is required even if no other permit is needed for the work proposed. If an applicant wishes to appeal a COA decision, he or she must appeal to the Board of Adjustment (BOA); a BOA decision may be appealed to the Durham County Superior Court.COA Application Instructions.

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1. What is a local historic district?
2. How is a local historic district designated?
3. What is a local historic landmark?
4. How is a local historic landmark designated?
5. What are the benefits of local historic landmark designation?
6. What is the National Register?
7. What are the benefits and responsibilities of National Register listing?
8. What is a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA)?
9. What work requires a COA?
10. How do I know if a property needs a COA?
11. Who reviews COA applications?
12. What about demolition of historic structures?
13. What is demolition by neglect?
14. What are the criteria for establishing a condition of demolition by neglect?
15. What is the process for determining demolition by neglect?
16. What are the outcomes in establishing a condition of demolition by neglect?
17. How do I find the zoning on my property?
18. What is being built on a property near me?