Work is underway on restoring 260 State Street, which suffered a devastating fire at beginning of 2018. Earlier this week, a question from a reader inspired Gossips to head over there and have a look.
The work being done on the dormers in the mansard roof and the mansard roof itself, which is now stripped of its slate tiles, are reasons for concern. The house is not located in a historic district, and the Historic Preservation Commission has no oversight in the restoration.
When the owner of the building appeared before the Planning Board--the only regulatory board involved with the project--in August 2021, his intention was to correct some alarming information about the plans for the building that had been presented at the previous meeting. He assured the Planning Board that the original slate on the mansard roof was to be repaired not replaced with asphalt shingles as had been previously stated. At the present time, it doesn't look like repair is what is happening.
The dormers in the mansard roof were not specifically mentioned in the presentation to the Planning Board, but the owner told the board, "Anything that we can maintain we will." Seeing the house today raises the question: Is the current state of the dormers a preliminary step in re-creating the dormers as they originally were, with arched windows and decorative mouldings, or is this some bizarre new design for the the dormers?
documents provided to the Planning Board in the site plan review offer no clues. And since the Historic Preservation Commission is not involved, we can only wait and see.
The house is being renovated to create eight market rate apartments--four studio apartments on the first floor, and four larger apartments on the upper two floors.
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