Historic District Commission

The Bristol Historic District Commission (HDC):

  • Regulates development in designated Local Historic District and on individually-designated properties to protect the unique physical character, historic fabric, and visual identity of the Town of Bristol;
  • Reviews proposals for any exterior alteration, new construction, landscaping, repair, removal, or demolition of buildings, structures, or their appurtenances located within the historic district; and
  • Contains residential, commercial, religious, educational, industrial, governmental, transportation, and civic buildings, in addition to other structures and open spaces.

Construction dates range from the 18th century to the present day, and architectural styles range from Colonial to Modern.

To view Historic District Commission rules, click here >

To find out whether your property is within the Historic District or is an individually-designated property, check out our Historic Properties map by clicking the image to the right, or download it by clicking the link below.

Welcome to the Bristol Historic District

Historic District Commission Brochure

Click the link below to view the Bristol Historic Commission’s informational brochure. Its contents cover the following:

  • Historical and Architectural Legacy of the Town.
  • What is a Historic District?
  • What is the Bristol Historic District Commission?
  • What properties are within the Historic District.
  • A map of the Historic District.
  • Guidelines for Review of Applications/Renovations.
  • How Projects get Reviewed by the HDC.
  • How to Obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness.
  • Commonly Asked Questions.
  • Information regarding Saving Money on Repairs for Buildings within the Historic District.
Commission Review Process

Learn more about the design review process for your project and obtaining a Certificate of Appropriateness.

Financial Incentives & Assistance

Learn more about the local, state, and federal incentives and financial assistance programs.

Historical & Architectural Legacy

With buildings constructed over a 300 year span, Bristol has a remarkable historical and architectural legacy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to commonly asked questions regarding the Town of Bristol’s Historic District Commission.

Meeting Information

The Historic District Commission meeting schedule, agendas, packets, and minutes can be found on Bristol’s Municode Meetings portal or the RI Secretary of State website. To sign-up to receive meeting alerts, click here.

To view a pdf of the 2023 Historic District Commission meeting calendar, click here >

Meeting details are usually made available to the public the Friday before a scheduled meeting.

Municode Meetings

Meeting Schedules | Meeting Agendas | Meeting Packets | Meeting Minutes

Looking for more information? Meeting packets can be viewed below. Please contact Diane Williamson at 401-253-7000 ext. 126 / [email protected] or Ed Tanner at ext. 128 / [email protected] for any questions regarding a specific agenda item.


Bristol’s Onboard System allows residents view the roles and responsibilities of this board, view the current members, appointment terms, and apply to available openings.


Are you interested in volunteering for one of the Town’s boards or commissions? Apply at the link below, or email the Town Clerk here.

RI Historic Preservation & Heritage Commission

The Commission is the state agency for historical preservation and heritage programs. The Commission operates a statewide historical preservation program that identifies and protects historic buildings, districts, structures, and archaeological sites.

Preservation Rhode Island

Preserve Rhode Island is a nonprofit organization with a mission to protect Rhode Island’s historic structures and unique places for present and future generations. They have information useful to historic property owners.

Historic New England

Historic New England is a museum of cultural history that collects and preserves buildings, landscapes, and objects dating from the seventeenth century to the present and uses them to keep history alive and to help people develop a deeper understanding and enjoyment of new England life and appreciation for its preservation.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The Trust is a nonprofit organization that supports historic preservation across the country. They have a great deal of information for historic property owners.

Contact Us

Physical Address: 235 High Street, 1st Floor, Bristol, RI 02809
Mailing Address: 10 Court Street, Bristol, RI 02809
Hours of Operation: Monday – Friday | 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Nicholas toth

Historic District Commission Coordinator

Phone: (401) 253-7000 ext. 153
[email protected]