There is a rich vocabulary that accompanies architecture and historic preservation. The following key terms have been identified to help homeowners navigate the historic preservation and Certificate of Appropriateness review process. More terms and definitions can be found in the full glossary of the Holland Historic District Design Guidelines.  

Key Terms

Architectural Feature A prominent or significant part or element of a building, structure, or site which is not a portion of the living area. Examples include cornices, awnings, eaves, etc.
Certificate of Appropriateness The written approval of a permit application for work that is appropriate and that does not adversely affect a resource.
Clapboard Narrow, horizontal, overlapping wooden boards, usually thicker along the bottom edge, that form the outer skin of the walls of many wood frame houses. The horizontal lines of the overlaps generally are from four to six inches apart in older houses.
Compatibility Designed and built in a manner that is in harmony with their natural and man-made surroundings and environment. Forms and materials are often cited as determinants of compatibility.
Contributing Resource Those buildings or landscapes built during the district’s period of significance that exist in comparatively original condition, or that have been appropriately restored or could reasonably be restored, and clearly contribute to the historic significance of the district. May also include buildings or landscapes which have been constructed prior to or after the period of significance which have acquired significance in their own right or are compatible with the character of the historic district.
Demolition The razing or destruction, whether entirely or in part, of a resource and includes, but is not limited to, demolition by neglect.
Demolition by Neglect Neglect in maintaining, repairing, or securing a resource that results in deterioration of an exterior feature of the resource or the loss of structural integrity of the resource.
Design As related to the determination of “integrity” of a property, design refers to the elements that create the physical form, plan, space, structure, and style of a property.
Elevation A mechanically accurate “head-on” drawing of a face of a building or object, without any allowance for the effect of the laws of perspective. Any measurement on an elevation is in fixed proportion, or scale, to the corresponding measurement of the real building.
Façade The face or elevation of a building.
Historic District An area, or group of areas not necessarily having contiguous boundaries, that contains one resource or a group of resources that are related by history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, culture, or significance.
Historic District Commission An area, or group of areas not necessarily having contiguous boundaries, that contains one resource or a group of resources that are related by history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, culture, or significance.
Historic Integrity The degree to which a building or landscape has retained its original elements.
Historic Preservation The identification, evaluation, establishment, and protection of resources significant in history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, or culture.
Historic Resource A publicly or privately-owned building, structure, site, object, feature, or open space that is significant in history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, culture of a community within this State, or of the United States.
In-Kind Replacement To replace a feature of a building with materials of the same characteristics, such as material, texture, color, dimension, etc.
Integrity The authenticity of a property’s identity, evidenced by the survival of physical characteristics that existed during the property’s historic period. Seven properties per the National Register Program: location, setting, feeling, association, design, workmanship, and materials.
Maintenance To prevent the deterioration or destruction of a historic building or feature, repairs must be done with minimal or no damage to the original building fabric in like materials and- if possible- using the same methods as first were used to create the building or feature.
Material As related to the determination of “integrity” of a property, material refers to the physical elements that were combined or placed in a particular pattern or configuration to form an historic property.
Non-Contributing Resource Those buildings and landscapes built during the district’s period of significance that have been altered to such an extent that original historic elements are not interpretable, and restoration is not possible; and also buildings erected outside the period of significance that are not individually significant nor have gained significance with the passage of time.
Notice to Proceed Authorization to perform work that does not qualify for a Certificate of Appropriateness but may be legally accomplished following conferral of the City of Holland’s Preservation Ordinance, Article XV, Section 2-102.4(a-d).
Ordinary Maintenance Keeping a resource unimpaired and in good condition through ongoing minor intervention, undertaken from time to time. Ordinary maintenance does not change the external appearance of the resource except through the elimination of the usual and expected effects of weathering. Ordinary maintenance does not constitute work under the ordinance.
Period of Significance The time period during which the majority of contributing buildings in a historic district were constructed.  
Reconstruction Involves recreating an historic building that has been damaged or destroyed by erecting a new structure that resembles the original as closely as possible. A reconstruction may be built with new or recycled building materials.
Rehabilitation A process of returning a property to a state of utility through repair or alteration, which makes possible an efficient contemporary use while preserving those portions or features of a property, which are significant to its historical, architectural, engineering, and cultural values.
Remodeling Changing the appearance and style of a structure, inside and out, by removing or covering over original details and substituting new materials and forms. Also called “modernizing”.
Renovation Similar to rehabilitation, except that in renovation work there is a greater proportion of new materials and elements introduced into the building.
Setback The distance from the lot line to the building.
Simulated Divided Light Window Windows that have muntins affixed to the inside and outside of the panes of glass to simulate the look of a true divided light window.
True Divided Light Window Windows that use muntins to form multiple individual panes of glass in the sash.
Vernacular Buildings in indigenous (local and regional) styles constructed from locally available materials following traditional building practice and patterns and not architect designed.
Window Parts The moving units of a window are known as sashes and move within the frame. The sash may consist of one large pane of glass or may be subdivided into smaller panes by thin members called muntins or glazing bars. Sometimes in 19th Century houses, windows were arranged side-by-side and divided by heavy vertical wood members called mullions.