The Holyoke Historical Commission was established on November 20, 1972 to preserve and develop the historical and archeological assets of the city. The Commission maintains an inventory of buildings, areas, and sites of architectural and/or historical importance in Holyoke. It collects reference information and can assist those seeking National Register Nominations for their buildings or neighborhoods. The Historical Commission administers the demolition by-law. Holyoke is a Certified Local Government.
The Holyoke Historical Commission works in cooperation with other municipal agencies to ensure that the goals of historic preservation are considered in planning for future development of the community. The Commission also coordinates with other local groups whose interests involve history or historic preservation. The Commission serves as the liaison between these groups on matters pertaining to historic preservation programs and is mandated to be the local municipal "watchdog" for state and federal preservation agencies, alerting them to local preservation issues.
Chapter 40, Section 8D of Massachusetts General Laws identifies five responsibilities for all commissions established under this Chapter:
- Conducting research on places of historical or architectural value
- Cooperating with the State Archaeologist in conducting surveys and reporting on sites
- Coordinating with other preservation organizations
- Keeping accurate records of its actions and filing an annual report and
- Maintaining a membership of not less than three or more than seven members, duly appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council.
The Chapter also allows for the Commission to:
- Prepare and distribute publications
- Make recommendations to the Mayor, City Council, and Massachusetts Historical Commission
- Hold hearings
- Enter into contracts and other agreements
- Accept gifts to further its work
- Hire staff and
- Acquire property in the community's name
- Holyoke Preservation Plan
- Demolition Delay Ordinance
- Additional Historic Preservation Resources
- Holyoke Historical Commission By-Law
- Holyoke Historical Commission Meeting Minutes
Documents Related to the Community Preservation Act (CPA)
- HHC Role and Responsibilities related to the CPA
- HHC CPA Eligibility Determination Policy
- 2021 Holyoke Properties on the State Register of Historic Places
- HHC Preservation Restriction Policy
The Holyoke Historical Commission meetings are generally held at 5:30 pm on the second Monday of the month and are currently being held via Zoom. Check the City Public Meeting Calendar for meeting notices with login/call-in information.
For information about the Holyoke Historic District Commission, which administers the Fairfield Avenue Local Historic District click here.
For information about the Holyoke Community Preservation Act, click here.