HIBS/HIER Program

The Historic Illinois Building Survey/Historic Illinois Engineering Record (HIBS/HIER) program (formerly the Illinois HABS/HAER), like its federal counterpart, is intended to document historic buildings and structures with measured drawings, photographs, and written descriptions.

Founded in 1995, the program sets the standards for the documentation of historic properties subject to provisions of state and federal legislative acts. These acts allow documentation of certain historic properties that are to be demolished or substantially altered as a result of projects involving state or federal funds, permits, licenses, or approvals. Though documentation of historic properties is most often prepared to conform to the Review & Compliance process, individuals and organizations may add appropriate materials to the HIBS/HIER collection on their own initiative. To be included in the collection, buildings, sites, structures, or objects must be listed in or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.

A hallmark of HIBS/HIER is its emphasis on a comprehensive historic context for each structure. Although the level of documentation varies based on the nature and significance of the property, the following are general requirements: measured drawings or sketched floor plans; photographs (present view, and possibly historic views); history of the site; and architectural/site description. All materials are subject to the approval of the HIBS/HIER coordinator.

More than 200 structures—including commercial buildings, houses, and bridges—have been recorded. The HIBS/HIER collection is housed in the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield. Those wishing to use the HIBS/HIER collection should contact the Library's microfilm section at 217-785-7941.

Click here for the HIBS/HIER collection list

Note to Consultants and Governmental Agency Liaisons:

As a result of the IHPA objective to refine and upgrade administered programs, the materials contained on this site represent the current policies, standards, guidelines, and general technical requirements concerning this program. Please discard any previous HIBS/HIER (or IL HABS/HAER) program information.

The HIBE/HIER program policies and requirements differ somewhat from the federal HABS/HAER program. These policies and requirements have been implemented to ensure the development of consistent, quality documentation for public use and the proper archival management of submited documentation. Many tasks carried out by federal reviewers and managers are now the responsibility of consultants and sub-consultants developing HIBS/HIER documentation.

The effective date for these policies, standards, guidelines, and technical requirements is January 21, 1999. Any HIBS/HIER projects initiated or new project submittals received after this date will be reviewed in accordance with the accompanying administrative information contained in the following documents.