Historic Landmarks Commission

The seven-member Commission's responsibility is to promote the historic, educational, cultural, economic, and general welfare of the public through the preservation, restoration, and protection of historic landmarks, buildings, and sites with the City. The Commission reviews requests for exterior alterations to historic structures, new construction adjacent to historic properties, and other permits in historic areas. Members serve four-year terms and are appointed by the Mayor.

Historic Landmarks Commission decisions can be appealed to the City Council.

Commission Members:

Michelle Dieffenbach, Vice President 
Paul Caruana
Mac Burns
Ian Sisson
Jack Osterberg
Katie Rathmell
Victoria Sage


Regular meetings are held on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 5:15 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers, 1095 Duane Street. Work sessions are held periodically following Commission meetings.

Meeting notices and agendas are posted on the Historic Landmarks Commission agendas link. Minutes from the meetings can be found on the minutes link.


Complete applications are due to the City by the 13th of the month prior to the meeting. Pre-application meeting with the Planner is required. It is recommended that applications be submitted prior to the 13th of the month to assure that that application is complete.


To determine if a property is designated as historic, go to the City's GIS map or contact the Planning Division. Staff can assist with information and resources concerning historic designations, preservation, and interpretation.

The City has adopted a Historic Preservation Plan and a  Historic Preservation Ordinance   that identify the goals, rules, and regulations concerning historic preservation in Astoria.

The City may have consultant services available to aid the public with their proposed projects on historic buildings or within historic neighborhoods. To arrange for this service, contact the Planning Division.

The Planning Division maintains a limited collections of historic photographs of properties within Astoria that can provide valuable information when considering alterations or reconstruction of historic properties. Other historic photographs are available from the Clatsop County Historical Society, Lower Columbia Preservation Society, and Sara's Old Photos. For more information from Sara's Old Photos, email or call 503-325-7969.

The Planning Division has Historic Landmarks plaques available that can be installed on properties designated as historic.

Dr. Edward Harvey Historic Preservation Award

Dr. Edward Harvey is considered to be the father of historic preservation in Astoria. Following Dr. Harvey's passing, the Historic Landmarks Commission (HLC) voted to commemorate him by presenting an annual Dr. Edward Harvey Historic Preservation Award  to owners of Astoria historic landmark properties who have excelled in historic preservation.  

Each year the National Trust for Historic Preservation proclaims May as Historic Preservation Month.  The Dr. Edward Harvey Historic Preservation Award is presented each year in May. The HLC receives nominations for the Award all year; however, in March/April a public service announcement is made through the local media requesting nominations from the public. There is no nomination form, simply call, email, or drop us a note with the address and a general description of the work that has been completed. Work must be have been completed within the past two years to be eligible. Here is a list of the Award recipients since its inception. 

The 2016 Dr. Edward Harvey Historic Preservation Award goes to: 3720 Duane Street. Check out the before and after photos ... great job!  

We had a special presentation during the 5/16/17 Historic Landmarks Commission meeting, by Julie Garver of Innovative Housing Inc., discussing the possibilities of renovating the Merwyn Hotel. You can see a copy of her presentation here! 



Historic Landmarks Commission Contact:

City Planner / Project Manager
1095 Duane Street
Astoria OR 97103