Thinking of Demolition?

The demolition of a building is such a final act and can have such an impact on a community's sense of place, that the Town of Falmouth has adopted procedures to insure that buildings that contribute to the community's character are not demolished without consideration of alternatives that might preserve them.


The two procedures are:

  • Historic Districts: Proposals to change or demolish buildings in historic districts must receive a certificate of appropriateness from the Historical Commission before permits can be issued. Historic Districts are located in the following seven villages: Davisville, Falmouth Center, North Falmouth, Quissett, Waquoit, West Falmouth, and Woods Hole. Maps showing the location of historic districts are available online at the Historical Commission page or in the Planning Department.
  • The Twelve-Month Demolition Delay Bylaw: The demolition delay bylaw applies to approximately 677 buildings of historical or architectural significance that are listed on the town's 'List of Significant Buildings' and are not located in historic districts. The List is maintained by the Falmouth Historical Commission and available in the Town Clerk's office.  

Historic District

If the building is in a historic district, applications for review by the Historical Commission may be obtained from the Planning Office. 

Waiver of Delay

Upon request of the applicant, the Historical Commission may issue a waiver of delay allowing demolition to proceed immediately, or at a specified time, or upon the fulfillment of specified conditions by the applicant, if the Commission deems that such a waiver is in the best interest of the Town.

Click here for the Demolition Delay Waiver Application and Application Process.

The Historical Commission can be reached by phone at 508-495-7440 and/or by email.