Saturday, April 20, 2019

Discussion scheduled on future of Old South Meeting Church - Apr 24

A discussion is scheduled at 7:10 PM during the April 24 Town Council meeting regarding the Old South Meeting Church on Washington St. The memo to neighborhood residents from Town Administrator Jeff Nutting is shown here:
"As are well aware the Meeting House at 762 Washington Street has been vacant for a long time. The Town Council will have a discussion on the potential future use of the property at their meeting on April 24, 2019. We would very much like to hear from you on this matter. The intent the meeting is to listen to ideas, suggestions and concerns prior to the Town Council considering any future action on the matter. 
Prior to the meeting the church will be open for viewing 5:00-6:15 PM on April 24, 2019. The meeting to discuss the matter will be held immediately after at 7: 10 PM in the Town Council Chambers. 
The Town did have an architect review the building in 2015 and estimated at the time the cost for the Town (subject to all public bid laws) to bring the building into compliance with all building, wiring, plumbing, handicap accessibility etc. codes would be about $500,000. Since then building construction prices have risen so the cost will be higher. 
The full report can be found at
Past discussions with the Historical Commission and others did not lead to any practical suggested reuse given the cost to renovate the building, limited parking, site lines looking west on Washington Street and the limited use the building has had over the years relative to peace and.  
The building does not meet current zoning requirements for residential or commercial use. The current zoning is RRI that requires 200 feet of frontage and 40,000 square feet of land. The only allowed use without a variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals would be for religious or educational use. 
The Town did construct a water booster station in the rear of the property (funds provided from the developer of Oak Hill Condo 's) and will maintain the station no matter what decision is made about the future of the Church. 
We would appreciate your attendance and comments. Please pass this information along to others who may be interested in this matter. I am happen to answer any questions you may have prior to the meeting."

The letter can also be found online

And viewed here

South Meeting House
Old South Meeting House, Washington St

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