Mayor Ganim Provides Update to Black Rock Harbor Historic District
Bridgeport, CT— It has come to the City’s attention that errors were made when the Black Rock Harbor Historic District (BRHHD) was created in 1978. Connecticut General Statutes §7-147b(j) requires a legal description (metes and bounds) of historic districts to be recorded on the land records, with the names of each district property owner indexed as a grantor. The reason for these requirements is to give public notice of historic district designation to those searching the land records, including potential purchasers.
Unfortunately, the 1978 ordinance (#31-1) creating the BRHHD contains an erroneous legal description, with errors in both distances and directions. Furthermore, the owners at the time of the ordinance were not properly indexed as grantors. Therefore, a title search would not reveal that the properties were included in the BRHHD. Since 1978, maps of the BRHHD have been inconsistent with respect to various boundaries and are not an accurate representation of the legal description required by §7-147b(j).
To rectify these legal concerns, Mayor Ganim has directed the City Attorney’s Office to proceed expeditiously to properly redress this legal matter for the benefit of the impacted residents of the Black Rock Community. The City Attorney’s Office and Office of Planning and Economic Development have consulted with the Connecticut State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) to obtain assistance in correcting the errors and re-establishing the BRHHD with its originally intended boundaries. SHPO has offered to assist with grant funding to perform a comprehensive survey of the BRHHD and an historical review of what was originally intended in 1978. The City is committed to proceeding with this project as a priority initiative. The City also intends to review the boundaries of its other historic districts to ensure that each has been properly defined and that all appropriate notices have been filed on the City’s land records.
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