State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) Approval Documentation

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New York’s State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), is part of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation. The mission of SHPO is to help communities identify, evaluate, preserve and revitalize their historic, archaeological and cultural resources.

If your library building is 50 years old or older and/or the project involves ground disturbance and/or demolition, please read the following document to determine if your project requires a SHPO approval:

Information for applicants taking an exemption based on Attachment A

If an applicant is using an exemption from Appendix A the applicant needs to state the exemption on the application.  If an applicant is unsure that a project activity is exempt, the applicant should get an approval letter from SHPO.

Also, the exemption must be applicable to all project elements. If some project elements are not exempt, then the applicant should get an approval letter from SHPO for those elements.

If appropriate, an approval letter from SHPO must be attached to your application as a signed PDF.

Instructions for obtaining SHPO approval letter:

All Consultation reviews through SHPO are now processed through the Cultural Resource Information System (CRIS).  Paper submissions are no longer accepted.  To access this interactive portal please click on the following link: link; opens in a new window.  You can submit projects as a guest or, if you frequently submit projects to the SHPO, you can sign up through to get a designated user ID for CRIS.  (For a brief step-by-step video tutorial on CRIS, first-time users can go to link; opens in a new window.) 

Once you enter CRIS you will go to the “Submit” tab and select “Consultation Project” which will take you through a series of screens where you will enter and/or upload the following items:  contact information; a brief description of the project; the location of the project area; the building location, description, and images (exterior and interior views); and any relevant supplemental information such as plans and specs.

A quick overview on how to access the new CRIS system: PowerPoint Slide Show PowerPoint icon [2.28Meg]; .PDF PDF icon [913k]

Please note that the review period is approximately 30 days from the time the material is accepted in CRIS. If required information is omitted, a request for additional information will be sent via CRIS to the contact person at the library. Upon receipt of the additional information at the SHPO, it may take an additional 30 days for the review.

Please provide adequate information and plan ahead for the review process. When the review is complete, a link to SHPO’s letter in CRIS will be sent to you via email.  Please attach the SHPO approval letter to your application as a signed .PDF.

In the event a building is determined by SHPO to be of historical significance, the SHPO approval letter must specify the precise changes to the building that are being approved. Any project components not specifically approved in writing will not be considered for funding. In the event a building is determined by SHPO to lack historical significance, a letter to that effect from SHPO must accompany the application. Such letter may be used in subsequent years to comply with construction application requirements. All SHPO letters must be submitted as PDF attachments.

Questions regarding the SHPO approval process should be directed to SHPO at 518. 237.8643.

Information about New York State’s historic preservation initiatives external link; opens in a new window

Last Updated: November 8, 2017 -- asm