Matt Kelly for Fredericksburg, Virginia City Council



Historic Preservation is critical to the future well-being of Fredericksburg. Enhancing our efforts in historic preservation not only positively affects our quality of life but boosts economic development and tourism. As the region grows so does the importance of preserving Fredericksburg’s unique historic character.

What Has Been Accomplished:

  • Served as chairman of Historic Preservation Taskforce that draft the city’s first Historic Preservation Plan.
  • Worked to secure the position and funding for the city Preservation Planner.
  • Served on committee that drafted the city’s first Archaeology Ordinance.

New ‘story map’ offers interactive look at Fredericksburg’s plans for preserving its history 5/3/2019

  • Worked with National Park Service and NAACP to design and secure funding for Potter’s Filed marker at Maury.

The Next Four Years:

  • Establish an incentives program together to encourage development and re-development compatible with the city’s historic downtown character.
  • Setup the Review Committee outlined in the Preservation Plan to annually assess the city’s compliance with the plan’s goals and provide professional support to city staff and the Architectural Review Board (ARB).
  • Provide the Architectural Review Board and applicants with outside resources to encourage/assist compliance with our Historic District Ordinances.
  • Make sure the City Code and zoning are in line with the city’s preservation goals to include expanding standing in the Historic District appeals process beyond just adjoining neighbors.

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The last building in the famous Civil War picture of the Confederate band at the end of the bridge is demolished. We are losing the city’s historic character a piece at a time. This needs to stop and the city needs to live up to its goal of truly becoming A leader in Historic Preservation. Passing Ordinances is not enough. We need to ensure they are actually followed.

The Prohibition safe for alcohol in the basement of Goolrick’s Pharmacy. There are many interesting stories in our city that have yet to be told. We need to do a better job preserving them and telling the stories. Preservation is economic development.

Matt has not only helped draft the city’s Archaeology Ordinance he has helped set up digs in the city including personal financial support. Matt does more than just vote on issues affecting the city.

The Renwick Courthouse is a national treasure. It is also an important piece of the historic fabric downtown that draws people to the city. Yet today it is unused and in disrepair. This situation is not unique to the Renwick Courthouse and it is a situation that must change. We need to work with property owners and developers to maintain our historic character. We can incentivize bars and restaurants and bars why not preservation?