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Watertown Historical Commission

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Council Chambers


Adopted February 11, 2010


Historical Commission Members Present:  Russo, Melone, Steele, Loukas, Berg, Roach


Staff Present:  Hayward, Collins


 Public Present:  See attached Sign-In Form


Russo chaired.  The meeting opened at 7:00p.m.


1.                   Renovations to Lower School Building, 175 North Beacon Street, MHC?s Historic Tax Credit Proposal, Request for Letter of Support, Perkins School for the Blind


Steve M. Rothstein, President of the Perkins School for the Blind, requested a letter of support from the HC in the school?s pursuit of MHC?s Historic Tax Credit for the rehabilitation of the existing lower school.    He noted that the restoration is to maintain the building for the next 100 years.  Rothstein informed that the tax credit program will not affect the proposed building construction financials since those are in place.  However, the tax credit will impact doing other proposed projects in the future. 


After a discussion, Russo agreed to write a letter of support, identifying Perkins restoration efforts in the windows restoration, door replacements, reuse of removed materials, and the location of the elevator.  He will complete the letter within two weeks.  Rothstein informed that the application is being submitted on 1/14/2010.


2.                  Invitation to Comment Continued? 240 Waverley Avenue - Proposed Telecommunications Facility Installation


The HC reviewed the additional elevation and details of the chimney provided by the Hayward.  The HC agreed to submit a ?no comment? for the proposed project.


3.                  December Minutes ? Approved.


4.                  Watertown Historic Landmark Ordinance


Russo reported that the Landmark Ordinance was adopted by Town Council.  Possible properties to be considered for landmarking are the Fowle House, the Church of the Good Shepherd, the Bigelow House.  Russo noted that town buildings are excluded.  Steele suggested that the HC office maintain a list of historic/preservation contractors.  Roach proposed that a list of benefits to landmarking be created.  Berg suggested using the 1982 Historic Inventory to identify possible properties for landmark status.


5.         Alberto Haynes


Berg and Russo reported writing a letter to Alberto Haynes granddaughter in Glendale, AZ.  Melone noted that he had met Ruth Haynes Furber, daughter of Alberto Haynes.

Berg and Russo are to meet with Phil Payne.


6.         Shick Property


Jones, Melone and Steele met.  They are developing a package of materials to present to MIT or Sasaki.  Steele hopes a study will identify long-term site issues of interest for planners, architects, and developers .  She?d like to connect the study with Filippello Park and Sawins Pond.


7.         Informational ? Donation of the original 1630 -1930 Watertown Historical Map by the family of Mary B. Hotz and supporting historic documents.


Hayward reported that Magoon forwarded the HC request regarding the presentation and location of the map to the Town Manager.


Vote:  Berg moved that the supporting historic documentations of the map be framed and matted paid with HC funds.  Roach seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimously approved.


Loukas will contact Hagopian Frames to frame the materials.


8.         Ridgelawn Cemetery


The TC adopted an ordinance which will exclude mausoleums at the cemetery.  Russo informed that the ordinance did not strike out the historic/cultural status of the cemetery.


Steele inquired if there were any historic landscapes in Watertown.  Russo will research the Commander?s Mansion deed.  There are possibly four Olmstead Brothers landscapes in Watertown located at Mt. Auburn Cemetery, the Commander?s Mansion, and the present location of Randy?s Car Wash.


Meeting adjourned at 8:12pm.