Committee Imposes 90-Day Delay on New Canaan Library’s Partial Demolition

An appointed town body on Monday voted 4-0 in favor of imposing a 90-day delay on the partial demolition of New Canaan Library. Members of the Historical Review Committee during a special meeting said that the original 1913 library meets criteria of local history and architecture as outlined in Section 12-10A of the Town Code. Citing a letter of objection to the library’s recent demo permit application that was filed by New Canaan resident Mimi Findlay, Committee Chair Mark Markiewicz said, “It’s very clear that the original 1913 building has a very compelling history, both socially in the town and architecturally.”

“It also seems like there’s a great potential to repurpose it, which would become a great cultural asset to New Canaan,” he added at the meeting, held in Town Hall and via videoconference. “To use its full footprint including the five rooms that originally were built, I think it offers a lot of opportunities for different events, whether it’s exhibits or music venues or whatever. And its central location is also important.

Letters Filed Objecting to Library’s Demolition Permit Application

The town’s chief building official last week received four letters of objection to a proposed demolition at New Canaan Library, according to emails obtained by NewCanaanite.com through a public records request. Three of the objection letters lodged with Chief Building Official Brian Platz appear to assume (incorrectly) that the entire 1913 library building will be razed under the demo plan. In fact the demo itself—as reported here—includes a preservation plan for the legacy building as approved in December by the Planning & Zoning Commission. One of the letters, filed by New Canaan Preservation Alliance’s Mimi Findlay, objects to the “partial demolition of the 1913 library.”

“The original, historic 1913 building consists of a dominant gable-roofed front portion and a subordinate rear portion under a lower hip roof,” Findlay wrote in her letter, filed Friday. “The latter has had its back (west) wall altered for the later additions.

New Canaan’s Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony Return [PHOTOS]

Brian Platz’s grandfather was in his mid-20s, with three children, when he was drafted into the U.S. Marines toward the end of World War II. 

Platz on Monday morning recalled that his grandfather “would tell us that we were actually running out of men.”

“The draft began, if I remember him correctly, with single men aged 18 to 26,” Platz—himself a U.S. Marines veteran, known to many New Canaanites as the town’s chief building official—told about 300 people gathered at Lakeview Cemetery for a Memorial Day ceremony. “Then went to married men 18 to 26. Married with one child. Married with two. Married with three.