People will have the opportunity on Tuesday to speak about a recommendation that three wooden bridges be placed on the historic registry.
A public hearing on the issues will be held Tuesday, Oct. 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. on the second floor in the Municipal Building, located at 214 Park Ave.
The three bridges, located on York, Union and Fairfield streets, once served as an integral piece of property in Aiken, and of six bridges, are the only three wooden bridges not modernized.
The Friends of the Railroad Depot were concerned about the bridges' future and brought the issue to the Design Review Board. The board recommended them to be placed on the historic registry.
If the Planning Commission recommends the bridges be designated historic, Aiken City Council will then take a final vote during a public hearing to decide the bridges' ultimate fate. If the bridges do become part of the historic registry, the registry will not ensure protection.
In other business, the Commission will discuss a proposed amendment to the zoning ordinance to add the proposed designation of the structures. According to Ed Evans, planning director, areas would have to be rezoned to permit any demolition of or changes to the bridges made in the street right-of-way.
“It would require a certificate of appropriateness,” Evans said. “In order for the bridges to be protected, you have to add the bridges to a list of things. Designation does not work without a second step.”
Before any construction, demolition, relocation or alteration can be made to the bridges, a certificate of appropriateness must be given to a historic structure.
For more information, call 803-642-7608.
Maayan Schechter is the city beat reporter with Aiken Standard and started with the paper in July. She has a degree in mass communications-journalism from the University of North Carolina Asheville.