Forum on Public Buildings

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Public Buildings InfoSheet: Vine Cottage

[Editor’s Note: The following has been prepared in advance of the “Forum on Public Buildings,” to be held 6:30 to 9 p.m. on April 26 at Town Hall (questions for panelists can be submitted here). Most of the information in the bullet points below is drawn from the Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee report.]

Built: ca. 1860
Square footage: 2,334
Current uses: Occupied by the New Canaan Department of Human Services
Committee recommendations: Defer a decision on renovation until the future home of the Board of Ed is determined. How other town-owned spaces are used will help inform a decision on the best future home for Human Services. Relevant news articles: Owner: Future of ‘Red Cross Building’ Depends on What Town Does with Vine Cottage (January 2018), ‘They Need To Be Separate’: Town Officials Weigh Future of Human Services’ Vine Cottage Home (October 2017), Seeking Less Costly Option, Town Council Rejects $550,000 Renovation Project at Vine Cottage (March 2017)

With its sunny yellow facade, this large transitional high Victorian gothic revival/Queen Anne building is located next to our Town Hall. Continue Reading →

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Public Buildings InfoSheet: Irwin House

[Editor’s Note: The following “Statement of significance” has been prepared in advance of the April 26 Forum on Public Buildings, to be held 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Town Hall—more information is available here and questions for panelists can be submitted here. Most of the information in the bullet points below is drawn from the Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee report.]

Built: 1963
Square Footage: 7,963
Current Uses: Recently provided swing space offices for the town, though a long-term use has not been identified. Committee Recommendations: Either put Irwin House to work or consider whether continued maintenance and the contingent liability is warranted. Potential use would be relocation of the Board of Educaiton from its leased office space either through a renovation/expansion or replacement, depending on the most cost effective and building appropriate analysis. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Public Buildings Forum InfoSheet: Waveny House and Park

[Editor’s Note: The following “Statement of significance” has been prepared in advance of the April 26 Forum on Public Buildings, to be held 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Town Hall—more information is available here and questions for panelists can be submitted here. Most of the information in the bullet points below is drawn from the Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee report.]

Built: ca. 1912
Square footage: 36,000
Current uses: Private and community events; town Recreation, Information Technology Departments
Committee recommendations: More profitable “hospitality” function of first floor; extensive renovation of second floor to provide more space for municipal use; use third floor/attic for required document and other storage. Relevant news articles: Birdcage Elevator Could be Best Option to Bring Waveny House Up to ADA Compliance (April 2018), Seeking More Info, Town Council Hits Pause on $1 Million Request for Waveny House (March 2018), ‘You Literally Just Salivate’: Officials Evaluating Town Buildings See Potential in Waveny House (April 2017)

(more…) Continue Reading →

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SAVE THE DATE: ‘Forum on Public Buildings’ To Be Held April 26

The New Canaan Historical Society, New Canaan Preservation Alliance, Town of New Canaan and NewCanaanite.com are co-sponsoring the “Forum on Public Buildings,” to be held 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, April 26. The event will start with a 30-minute coffee outside the Town Meeting Room at Town Hall. The forum itself, to run 7 to 9 p.m., is a chance for residents to address, put questions to and hear from decision-makers and experts in our local government on what’s happening with several public buildings whose future use, ownership and in some cases, existence, is now under discussion. Those buildings include:

Waveny House
Irwin House
Former Outback Teen Center
Vine Cottage
Irwin Barn

Panelists include:

John Engel, Town Council chairman
Kevin Moynihan, first selectman
Penny Young, member, Town Council; co-chair, Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee; co-chair, Town Council Infrastructure and Utilities/Public Works Committee
Amy Murphy Carroll, member, Board of Finance; co-chair, Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee
Cristina A. Ross, member, Town Council; co-chair, Town Council Infrastructure and Utilities/Public Works Committee

The panel will be co-moderated by Mark Markiewicz, president of the New Canaan Historical Society’s Board of Governors; Charles Robinson, member of the NCPA Board of Directors; and Michael Dinan, editor of the New Canaanite. To prepare our readers ahead of the forum and make best use of the time, info-sheets on the buildings listed above, and others, will be published on NewCanaanite.com starting April 16. Continue Reading →

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