German Village and other downtown neighborhoods have high tenant and homeowner turnover rates. A common issue related to these turnovers is the installation of satellite dishes. As with any exterior alteration or addition, these require a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) from the German Village Commission, prior to their installation. While federal laws regulate and protect citizen access to communication, they also give local governments authority to protect historic structures such as ours. Because of this, local government entities (like our German Village Commission) can address communications issues as long as they do not interfere with existing federal legislation. Here are some things keep in mind as you prepare your COA application.
Here are answers to our most frequently asked questions:
1. Do I need to submit an application to install a satellite dish? Yes, you must have a Certificate of Appropriateness prior to installation. Be sure to include a photograph of your home or business and a clear indication of where you want to locate the dish, as well as standard dish dimensions. Click here for an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness.
2. Does it matter where I install a satellite dish? Yes. The satellite dish should be placed in a location where it can function properly with the least visibility from the street.
3. I’m switching service providers…what now? Make sure the dish installation is reversible and does not permanently alter your historic building. If and when it is removed, be sure to repair and restore your structure so that passersby would never know a dish was there.
4. Will I need to go to a Commission meeting to deal with this? Probably not. Satellite dish applications are usually administratively approved by the City Historic Preservation Office staff.