Town of Orleans to hold Old Kings Highway public hearing

Selectmen looking to withdraw Orleans from the regional historic district

The Orleans Board of Selectmen will hold a public meeting on Wednesday, April 1 at 6:45 p.m. in the Nauset Room of the Town Hall. The purpose of the meeting is to obtain resident feedback about the board's plan to withdraw the town from the Old Kings Highway Regional Historical District. 

Removal of the town from Old Kings Highway Regional Historical District would free Orleans from the requirements and governance outlined by the district. The warrant for the May Town Meeting will contain an article that if passed, would allow the selectmen to begin the process of withdrawing from the district.

See the Old Kings Highway Regional Historic District Commission Bulletin here and guidelines here. The district, which was established in 1973, encompasses the area north of Route 6 in six towns (Sandwich, Barnstable, Yarmouth, Dennis, Brewster and Orleans). It is the largest historic district in the country, according to the Town of Barnstable. See Old Kings Highway maps on the Barnstable town website here.

Each of the towns in the district has their own Old Kings Highway historical commission, see the Orleans Historical Commission here. In the January minutes of the Orleans Old Kings Highway Regional Historic District Committee, members remarked that the committee has been "functioning without a full complement for several years and citizen interest appears to be waning."  The members of the committee were asked to appear before the selectmen on February 18.

The Orleans Annual Town Meeting will be on Monday, May 11 at 6:30 p.m. at Nauset Regional Middle School.


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