The Mission of Preservation Chelsea

It is our mission to preserve Chelsea as a village rich with history and charm, reflected by historic buildings, surrounding farmlands, and as found in our beautiful and vibrant village center. We aim to work through education, offering to ourselves and the community the history of Chelsea as well as the issues shaping our future. We intend actively to preserve historic landmarks and to have a voice in all issues that affect any possible de-centralization of our village. It is our intention to pursue this mission with full involvement and input from merchants and citizens of Chelsea and to act in ways that make sense for the preservation of Chelsea's charm and historic integrity while supporting a vibrant and successful downtown.

Federal Screw Works

Federal Screw Works
This property has been under threat of total demolition since 2008--there are historically signficant and architecturally interesting sections that should be preserved!

Jackson Street Panorama

Jackson Street Panorama
The DDA voted at the meeting on 9.20.12 to demolish the Daniels Addition Car Showroom despite the letter from the State Historic Preservation Office. (please read below)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Points sent to each City Council member p 3

nationally significant and “together , the train station, old hotel, and livery make up one of the (if not THE) last remaining transportation cooridors in the US to have all three of these buildings types. She stated that in her consultations with several hundred historians, architects, transportation specialists, librarians and state historic preservation officers that “Chelsea is extraordinary and, in my view, literally unique in retaining not only the first hotel, but also the livery. In my research, I uncovered no equivalent situation…The loss of this building (the Livery) would affect not only Chelsea, but also the history of everyday life in the United States.”
- The Livery is believed to be one of only a few liveries still standing in Michigan, Several of these have been adaptively reused and house successful businesses.
- The Longworth Buildings are a contributing part of a nomination for the National Register of Historic Places.
- Historic buildings,including those with exposed brick interiors, are very marketable to present day restaurants (Common Grill) and retail businesses (Treehouse) owners.
- In the most recently published Community Guide published by the Community Observer, 100 % of Chelsea’s listed “Attractions” (See Attachment B) were either located in historic buildings in town (which was often mentioned in its description) or involved historic information sharing. We are using our HISTORY to market our town and yet the City and the DDA are tearing down very historically significant buildings without just cause.

Improper Operation of DDA
- The DDA made these decisions without following appropriate procedures such as using bylaws and Open Meetings Act requirements
- Demolition does not support the DDA’s own adopted goals and objectives:
A. To maintain the strength of the city center as an active marketplace-the retail
center of Chelsea,. It is important to capatilize on the historic character of the
B. To continue to enhance the historic character of the downtown through
restoration and renovation…
D.Maintain the distinction of the different character…of the commercial district
and downtown Chelsea.
A.Preservation of Chelsea’s small-town character and historic image.
- Demolition of these historic sites is in violation of State of Michigan Public Act 197 of 1975 (the act which allows for the formation of DDAs) “A public facility, building, or structure that is determined by the municipality to have significant historical interest shall be preserved in a manner…in accordance with laws relative to the preservation of historical sites.”
- The DDA has not had bylaws in its entire existence (since 1985) which violates the City of Chelsea Code of Ordinances Chapter 12, Section 12-45 Bylaws “The board of the authority shall develop and approve bylaws for its operation.” (Ordinance No. 97)
Without written bylaws and procedures, the public has no idea how the DDA works, how decisions are made, or how to have input and it allows the DDA to operate without public accountability.

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