Archaeology Review Process

Projects undertaken by the City Archaeology Program stem from local construction and development that will impact cultural resources. In 1987, the City drafted an Archaeology Preservation Ordinance to protect its buried heritage. The unique ordinance evaluates effects of ground-penetrating construction activities on both public and private properties. 

When is Archaeology Required?

A ground-disturbing project within the City limits requires review by the Archaeology Program if it is:

Criteria for Archaeological Review (JPEG)

Building and development projects that typically require archaeological review include, but are not limited to:

  • new single or multi-family homesA woman works in an excavation area within a building
  • additions such as garages, apartments, or house extensions
  • inground swimming pools
  • perimeter or flood walls
  • structure elevations
  • commercial developments (or re-developments)
  • street utilities such as gas, electric, or sewer lines
  • restaurant grease traps and associated plumbing
  • demolition of structures

For assistance with determining whether a property is within an Archaeology Zone or evaluating whether archaeology is required, please contact the Planning and Building Department at 904-825-1065.

What to Submit for an Archaeological Review

If archaeology is required for a project, please visit the City Planning and Building Department located at City Hall on the 4th floor of Lobby B with the following documents:

  1. A completed A14 Archaeological Review Application
  2. Construction Plans and/or Lot Survey
  3. A14 Application Fee paid by card or check at the counter (fee determined by the Archaeology Zone location and total valuation of project)

For ease of communication, please include contact information for both property owners and contractors (if applicable) on the A14 Application. Excluded information can delay staff review. Please note that applications will not be reviewed by the Archaeology Program until the application fee is paid.

After Submitting for Archaeological Review

Once an A14 Archaeological Review Application is submitted with complete documentation and the associated fee is paid, the packet will be forwarded to the City Archaeology Program for review by the City Archaeologist. Following a staff review of the proposed ground disturbance, historical records, and research of archaeological deposits on or near the property, the need for an archaeological investigation will be determined. 

Volunteers Screening and Recovering ArtifactsHow Long Does an Archaeological Investigation Take?

An excavation project may span from a few days to several weeks, depending on the scope of work and project location. The Archaeology Program strives to perform work in a timely manner to accommodate property owners and contractors. Fieldwork is completed by two, full-time staff archaeologists and a group of highly dedicated volunteers. Projects are completed based on the order that applications are received and scheduling is dependent on both property owner/contractor and staff availability.