The design guidelines are written to assist both the property owner or applicant and the Historic Lancaster Commission in making appropriate decisions regarding the appearance and character of its historic buildings and sites. The goal is to help protect the overall character of Lancaster by emphasizing preservation of architectural styles, details and streetscape elements that make up the communitys unique historic character. They provide background information and recommendations to help guide appropriate rehabilitation work and alterations of existing buildings or additions, new construction and sitework. They emphasize compatibility of new building features with the areas historic character. While they are intended for use in the city's historic areas, these guidelines off information and advice that can be useful to anyone who is interested in maintaining and preserving an older or historic property in Lancaster.