Today’s Daily News article has finally put the nail on the coffin on this idea that people who move to an historic seaport will naturally do the ‘right thing’ and historically preserve their buildings. 95% of home owners may preserve but all it takes is the 5% to mar an entire neighborhood and depress the property values of a historic street!
“Harris called the Tappan House’s demise a reminder that without improved protections in place, people will continue to buy property with houses that are entirely feasible to preserve but will destroy them anyway.”
Unfortunately, closer to home, perfectly good historic homes are being demolished right here in Newburyport or extensive plans are being made to demolish homes.
We have a good sturdy home on Water Street that because of the water views, the owner wanted to demolish the building and had hired an architect who specialized in big McMansion-style structures.
We had a property owner who though told the house was perfectly able to be preserved, ignored the preservation recommendations and cut a scar into a South End street.
We have a good sturdy historical home across from the High School that an out-of-town owner wants to demolish.
We had a commercial group that misused the exploratory permit to completely strip another house down to a bare frame and then put in a faceless replacement when they were caught.
We have an historic home on Strong Street in which the owner plans to demolish so a new building can be built in its place.
We have an out-of-town developer who left the windows wide open so the elements could damage the building permanently, waited out the demolition delay and then demolished a perfectly good historical home.
I mean, how many examples do we need to cite before the citizens realize that we need to protect the very thing that has given us our affluent community?
I had a local who was vociferously attacking little Mary Haslinger over an aside political statement – the discussion was not the point – the point that struck me was the person attacking her later asked, “Who is this person?” I explained that her father was one of the chief people responsible for the restoration of our Downtown and the spread of historic preservation throughout the city.
The person snipped, “Oh, I don’t care about that.”
Perhaps said in anger, but the response took the stuffing out of me.
How can so many simply not care?