Topics: Historic preservation

Voters Nix Monomoy Theatre Zoning Proposal

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Treating it like an idea straight out of left field – literally – voters gathered at Veterans Field for Saturday’s special town meeting summarily rejected a zoning bylaw change linked to the redevelopment of the Monomoy Theatre property. Seated in the baseball field facing the outfield, voters could imagine the project that would have created 24 condominium units on the property next door, just behin...

CHATHAM – The owner of the historic Nickerson house on Shell Drive, thought to be one of if not the oldest house in town, will seek the town's permission to keep it on the land where it’s stood for more than 300 years. Joe Giacalone said he'd like to relocate the house, built on the shores of Bassing Harbor by the son of Chatham founder William Nickerson, to a new spot on the three-acre lot and restore it as a...

CHATHAM — Disposing of Saturday’s special town meeting in about 36 minutes, voters unanimously rejected a zoning bylaw change linked to the redevelopment of the Monomoy Theatre property. Worried about the density and traffic that the project would create, and without any guarantee that a restored theater building would ever operate the way Monomoy Theatre did, 324 voters unanimously turned down the zoning byla...

Commission Looks To Increase Demolition Delay To 18 Months

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — Town officials have been focusing on preservation of the historic character of the community over the past couple of years. The approval of the West Harwich Special District zoning amendment in the annual town meeting on Saturday was one step, and the historic district and historical commission is considering additional protective measures. The commission is working on extending the period of the his...

Petition Seeks To Save Town's Oldest House

By: Tim Wood

Eldredge Garage Property Suggested As New Location CHATHAM – Ellen Briggs thinks it's not too much to ask to preserve what is thought to be the oldest house in town. She certainly doesn't want to see another piece of the town's heritage slip away. “The town has a history of doing that, and we'd like this not to happen,” she said. Protect Our Past, a preservation group Briggs founded a year ago, is circul...

ORLEANS — If the Orleans Historical Commission gets its way, one of the oldest buildings in Orleans will be preserved either in its current location or a new location. The seven-member board voted unanimously at its virtual Aug. 26 meeting to impose a 12-month demolition delay on the front building at 12 West Rd. The building is “one of a handful of properties in Orleans that is still standing that was buil...

Residents Work To Shape West Harwich DCPC

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — Members of the public provided input last week on a zoning provision designed to meet the goals of the West Harwich District of Critical Planning Concern approved by the county last December. Town Planner Charleen Greenhalgh said the call for the DCPC was driven by a proposal to build a 7,400-square-foot retail store along Route 28 and to demolish an old sea captain’s home on the site. This raised a ...

Coalition Developing To Save Oldest House

By: Tim Wood

CHATHAM – Two non-profit organizations are teaming up with the town's historical commission to try to save what many believe is the oldest house in town. The house at 68 Shell Dr., which sits on Bassing Harbor, is believed to have been built by the son of Chatham's first European settler, William Nickerson, around 1700. A demolition delay on the house imposed by the historical commission expired last month, an...

HARWICH — Time may not be on the side of the planning board and Town Planner Charleen Greenhalgh as they work to shape a West Harwich district of critical planning concern article for the annual town meeting planned for late September. Greenhalgh and board members have been talking about putting together a document to meet the minimum DCPC guidelines for the September meeting and returning for additional provi...

HARWICH — The planning board is hoping to prepare at least some of the provisions necessary to implement the West Harwich District of Critical Planning Concern in time for adoption in the September annual town meeting. But last week Town Planner Charleen Greenhalgh told the board that it was unclear whether the board of selectmen will even be accepting additional articles for the meeting warrant. The planni...

HARWICH — Due to the high cost of moving and rehabilitating a Victorian house that once served as the rectory and later the thrift shop at Holy Trinity Church, the affordable housing trust has decided not to pursue the building as affordable housing. The Roman Catholic Diocese has plans to remove the building, constructed in 1914 on the west side of the church on Route 28 in West Harwich. The structure has bee...

May Be Town's Oldest House CHATHAM – William Nickerson came to the Cape's elbow in the mid 1600s to found his own community. He built a homestead for himself and his family on the shores of Ryder's Cove, and later welcomed others who settled throughout the area that is now Chatham. The first settlers' homes are lost; all that is left of Nickerson's house is an outline in the earth and some artifacts discove...

CHATHAM – For the second time in two years, the historical commission has imposed a delay on a proposal to demolish a portion of an iconic home at the corner of Shore Road and Seaview Street. Commission members weren't happy with new plans to renovate and add on to the 93-year-old bow roof Cape at 233 Seaview St., which they said would be much larger than the existing building and would alter the historic stre...

Antique Orleans Barn Moved

By: Ed Maroney

Monday’s journey of the old Hanvey barn from Great Oak Road began with suspending the roof, before a trailer made a tight turn  and just got by the fence of neighbor Vince Ollivier. “It’s like losing an old friend who moves away,” said Ollivier, who grew up on the property across from the barn. “The only time you see him is when you visit.” Gregg LeStage, the barn’s new ow...

ORLEANS — Gregg LeStage’s great-grandfather burned down a barn on his Barley Neck Road property in 1956 because it blocked his view of the water. When his great-grandson bought the place for his own family in 2001, he tore down another barn that was in poor condition and a potential danger for his young daughters. “At that time in my life, it was way too expensive to repair,” LeStage said last week. “From that...

Concerted Effort Needed To Save Town's Oldest House

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM – Without intervention from town officials, one of the oldest houses in Chatham and a direct link to founder William Nickerson, could be lost. Historical Commission Chair Frank Messina appealed to selectmen last week to pull together a group of stakeholders to brainstorm ways around roadblocks that could lead to the demolition of the home at 68 Shell Dr. “It's not that we want to break the law, but ...