Thursday, January 8, 2009

The sun seems a little brighter today. Cornwallis Elm LLC is going to ask the Zoning Commission for a second continuance rather than propose a massive medical office building in our neighborhood.

Henry Isaacson (their guy) asked Don Vaughan (our guy) if the neighbors would accept a continuance providing Cornwallis Elm LLC used the additional time to propose a residential community of "high end town homes."

Neighbors are reacting with joy darkened by the cold realism brought on by Cornwallis Elm LLC's past behavior and their insistence that the Commencement House be moved or destroyed.

Having bought the four homes in 2005 and 2006 apparently on speculation they could build two more banks (!), they have exercised poor stewardship over their properties. (See earlier posts of Commencement House photos.)

They held an ill-advertised, ill-run meeting on December 1st to tell neighbors they wanted to build a parking deck and two two-story buildings.

They asked for a continuance at the December Zoning Commission meeting and said they would meet with neighbors. To my knowledge they have not met with neighbors or asked to do so. (Did someone hurt their feelings at that December 1st meeting?)

Now they have apparently have a new proposal - one that should be more acceptable but at the cost of a architectural and historic treasure.

Bet the neighborhoods won't trust Cornwallis Elm LLC until they've much more than words to consider.

1 comment:

  1. A small group of preservationists visited the interior of the Commencement House today.
    We found it to be in remarkably good shape considering the use and abuse it has received over time. Moving the house would pose several severe difficulties, but we are trying to find a way to save it. We will delve deeper and look for possible solutions in the next few weeks. As the NY Times said today about the possible demise of the Rainbow Room, “We hope it finds a way to survive.”
    Jane Levy