Calls for new historic home mandates
To the Editor:
I lived in Connecticut at one time and have seen the Sanford/Bristol home in person, as well as knowing the beautiful neighborhood.
As an artisan and traditional timber wright, not only do I believe this is an atrocity being carried out by the current owner under false pretence of "care and concern," for vintage architecture, I can't understand how an official body that presumes to represent historic architecture could ever consider razing a building like this without thoroughly vetting the actual conditions of the structure with at least three qualified sources.
Qualified being someone like myself, or at a minimum a PE firm that uses folks like me as part of their assessment team. I read the PE report, and for the most part, hold them harmless.
They are actually a 'victim' of sorts in all of this, as the disclosure at the end of the report reflects. The owner is clearly trying to manipulate the system, by only asking questions of parties that are either unqualified or will provide the answers the current owner wants to hear.
After this case, I would go a step further in that Milford authorities should adopt stricter policies, as others have done. They should make razing a building like this even more challenging by putting certain mandates on reconstructing a historic home.
These mandates would require all new construction on old foundations or augmentation of current historic structures, in historic districts, to be performed in the original style of the replacement and/or augmented architecture.
This includes means, methods, and materials, with only subtle modifications for modern conveniences.
So even if Mr. Farrell did ultimately have the home razed, he would be required to replace it with only the period work of the original architecture, (with current acceptable updates that do not change the affect of presentation, or effect the building for modern function, or stray from the style it is built in by the original housewright.)
This is not only achievable, but is more than warranted for the future of historic preservation of our country's heritage. Please give me your guidance to make the impact this building deserves.
Jay C. White Cloud