Planning Commission

The Planning Commission has all the powers that are now or hereafter granted to it by ordinances of the city or by laws of the state:

  • The Commission shall control the subdivision of land and land use actions and may make recommendations to the Council, to public officials, and to individuals regarding land use, location of thoroughfares, public buildings, parks and other public facilities and regarding any other matter relating to the planning and development of the city and the surrounding area.
  • The Commission may make studies, hold hearings, and prepare reports and recommendations on its own initiative or at the request of the Council. All recommendations and suggestions made to the Council shall be in writing.

The Independence Planning Commission meets on the first Monday of every month at 7:00 p.m. in the chambers at the Independence Civic Center. If the Monday is a legal holiday, the meeting is moved to the second Monday. If no business is scheduled or a quorum of Commissioners is not able to attend, the meeting may be canceled.

The Planning Commission is composed of seven members, no more than two of whom may be non-city residents. Planning Commission members are appointed to three year terms.

Minutes and Agendas for Previous and Upcoming Meetings

Planning Commission Members

  • Position #1 SCHWARZLER, Kate
    Expires: 12-31-2024
  • Position #2 PARASKEVAS, Alex
    Expires: 12-31-2023
  • Position #3 JAY, Rebecca
    Expires: 12-31-2024
  • Position #4 (vacant)
    Expires: 12-31-2022
  • Position #5 COEN, Sally
    Expires: 12-31-2024
  • Position #6 CHAPPELL, Corby,
    Expires: 12-31-2022
  • Position #7 VÁZQUEZ, José
    Expires: 12-31-2023

Historic Preservation Commission

The Independence Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) works to:

  • Protect significant elements of Independence’s history.
  • Foster public appreciation and civic pride in the beauty of historic properties.
  • Enhance the visual character of the city.
  • Celebrate the accomplishments of the past.

To find out whether Historic Preservation Commission review is required for a project, please fill out an Application to Certify Historic Appropriateness.

Agendas & Minutes for a Historic Preservation Commission Meeting

Altering a Property in the Historic District

Individuals that plan to modify a structure within the Independence Historic District should contact the City of Independence. A review of the revisions may be necessary.

To find out the review process, please contact Fred Evander, Community Planner, at (503) 837-1168.

Alterations to the exterior of a structure, or removal or demolition of a historic resource, requires historic review when:

  • The home or business is located within the Independence Historic District.
  • The building is located outside the Historic District, but has been designated by the city as a historic landmark.

The Independence Historic Preservation Commission also reviews new construction within the Historic District.

To start the review process, please submit an Application to Certify Historic Appropriateness. Depending on the nature of the action, the property may require a public hearing before the Independence Historic Preservation Commission.

Removal of historic trees is also reviewed by the Commission.

Historic review is not required:

  • When there is no change in the appearance or material composition of the existing structure.
  • When the repair or maintenance of the structure uses the same materials in the area being repaired.
  • For interior alterations.
  • For changes in paint color.

About the Historic District

The Independence Historic District was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. At that time, the buildings within the Historic District were classified as contributing or non-contributing based on considerations including: the building style, the type and number of alterations, the building materials, the setbacks and the number of stories. Architectural styles found within the district included Victorian, Gothic, Craftsman, Italianate, Spanish Colonial and more.

Click here for additional details about the district.