Certificate of Appropriateness

What is a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA)?COA Application Opens in new window

A Certificate of Appropriateness is a document stating that the proposed work is appropriate for the Historic District and meets criteria in the City Code. Work completed without a Certificate of Appropriateness will be in violation of City Code and could result in fines. 

A Certificate of Appropriateness Application will need to be submitted and receive proper approval and necessary permits before any work can begin. Level of approval depends on the project’s scope of work. 

Property owners planning on making any alteration or addition within the Historic District shall notify the Downtown Office in the beginning stage of planning to determine if a Certificate of Appropriateness is needed.

Who Needs a Certificate of Appropriateness?

Any property owner with a building located in the Plainview Commercial Downtown Historic District (see map below) will need to complete a COA. We encourage anyone in the downtown area to complete an application, even if the building is not located in the district.

Historic District Map

What is the process for the COA application?

Plainview COA Flow Chart 10.14

Step 1: Meet with Downtown Plainview/ Main Street (DP/MS) Staff: Property owners wishing to do any work to the exterior of their property will need to meet with DP/MS staff to determine whether a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) is needed before any work begins

Step 2: Submit Application: The Certificate of Appropriateness Application (COA) application shall be submitted to DP/MS staff and $50 application fee to the Community Development Office. 

Step 3: Staff Review: Staff shall review the application to determine if all criteria of Historic Design Guidelines are met. The property’s classification (contributing and noncontributing) will also be taken into consideration to determine whether the façade property changes may prompt a review for recommendation from the Hale County Historical Commission (HCHC) and/ or approval by the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z).

  • Staff Approved: The Property Owner may proceed with obtaining proper permits to begin facade improvements. 
  • Hale County Historical Commission: Staff may consult with the HCHC to receive their recommendation for the façade improvements.  
  • Downtown Plainview / Main Street Design Committee: Staff may consult with the Design Committee to receive their recommendation for the facade improvements.
  • Planning and Zoning Commission Approval Required:DP/MS Staff will forward the COA application to be reviewed by P&Z when:
    1. The proposed scope of work includes structural changes to the building’s façade. Staff will consult with the HCHC to receive their recommendation to the proposed changes before presenting the application to P&Z.
    2. The application is not approved by staff. The Property owner may request to submit the COA Application to P&Z to appeal the decision. The application will also be presented to the HCHC for recommendations before it is presented to P&Z. 

Step 3.1 Planning and Zoning Commission Meeting:  P&Z will meet to review the application and determine whether the application is consistent with the Historic Design Guidelines or if modifications to the application need to be made. P&Z will consider HCHC’s recommendation, staff application review and property owner’s request.  

  • Approved – The Property Owner may proceed with obtaining proper permits to begin the façade improvements.
  • Modification Needed – The property owner will submit a modified application for P&Z review. 


(P&Z meets on the second(2nd) and fourth(4th) Thursday of each month. A public notice shall be made 10 business days before the meeting in accordance with the Notification Requirements as set out in Section 12.11.006. Property/ business owners are encouraged to attend to answer any questions the commission might have on the proposed projects.) 

 Where do I get a Certificate of Appropriateness Application?

The Certificate of Appropriateness Application (COA) application is available by clicking on the link or from the Downtown Plainview / Main Street Office, located at City Hall, 202 W. 5th Street, Plainview, Texas. Please call 806.296.1100 for more information.