The owner of the Main Street building long occupied by Baskin Robbins said she’s finalizing an agreement that will see a different ice cream purveyor move into the commercial space. Former site of the iconic Gramophone Shop music store, 103 Main St. since 2002 has been occupied by Baskin Robbins, which owner Anna Valente-Krolikowski closed Saturday. Terry Spring of Cody Real Estate LLC said the ownership company is “in the process of finalizing a lease with another ice cream store.”
“We have been working with Anna on this, she has done such a great job and will be a hard act to follow,” Spring told NewCanaanite.com in an email. “We will announce soon.”
Saying a New Canaan builder has been collaborative and respectful of local history, officials on Tuesday voiced support for a plan to preserve much of an antique home on God’s Acre while rebuilding the rest of the house. Though members of the Historic District Commission for technical reasons (cited during a testy exchange, see below) stopped short of voting on whether to immediately approve a “Certificate of Appropriateness” for Karp Associates’ plan for the Greek Revival at 4 Main St., they applauded the firm’s decision to keep more than two-thirds of the original home. “It’s been noticed that you have gone above and beyond in your effort to keep the large majority of the antique house, all of the facade that is visible from the street—two facades, the 26-foot front and 30-foot side and the roof—and that you have also kept certain interior features which are out of our jurisdiction,” Commission Vice Chairman Marty Skrelunas said during the appointed body’s special meeting, held at Town Hall. He addressed Arnold Karp, president of Karp Associates, and COO Paul Stone, both in attendance. Skrelunas and Commissioner Mark Markiewicz had formed a subcommittee that worked with Karp’s team and architect Christopher Hull of Fairfield-based CAH Architecture and Design LLC for more than one month on plans for the prominent property.
The volunteer municipal body that oversees the preservation of New Canaan’s historic district—God’s Acre and the buildings around it—had a new officer appointed to its commission during an odd, tense meeting Thursday. The former secretary of the Historic District Commission, Terry Spring, who had served on the five-member group since 2005, wasn’t reappointed by town officials earlier in the week. Instead, the Board of Selectmen appointed alternate Carl Rothbart as a regular member. Spring’s ousting meant that a new secretary had to be elected. Yet she attended the commission’s Jan.
The Board of Selectmen said this week that New Canaan has paid about $5,390 in legal fees this fiscal year and nearly $19,000 overall for advice regarding the sober house on West Road. ***
Straight Outta Maple: We received the photo at right—depicting Jack Trifero and Terry Spring, arrested last week after refusing to leave the burial ground alongside the Merritt Village condo-and-apartment development on Maple and Park Streets—with a caption reading that the pair were “carrying the ONLY weapon they had at their unlawful arrest, a zoning map of the Maple Street Cemetery.” Trifero also supplied his statement to police in which he said an owner of the property threw rocks at him and one hit his leg. “I feel he was also throwing them at Terry—so I was concerned. After about 5 or 6 stones, he stopped. I felt it was an unprovoked violent act.”
Though they’d support another group’s efforts, the owners of a 3.3-acre parcel on the edge of downtown New Canaan said Tuesday that they’re withdrawing an offer to restore, plaque and protect an abutting, long-ignored and historically important cemetery after hearing complaints that its presence should disrupt the their widely discussed redevelopment plans. When they applied to the town in June to create 123 housing units on the Merritt Apartments property where 38 now exist, the property’s owners hired a consultant who determined that Ezra Benedict’s 1852-buit “Maple Street Cemetery” is one generation away from vanishing due to neglect. After running a sonar scan of the grounds and tracking down the heirs of 52 people buried there, property owner M2 Partners developed plans for rejuvenating the cemetery into a local landmark, with reset gravestones, family grouping and a plaque recognizing the remains of those interred with no headstone. “We were happy to do that and after the effort and time and the lack of consideration back to us of the applicant, we have withdrawn our offer of fencing it off, putting a plaque on it, putting a gate there and making sure it is not a ball field,” Arnold Karp of M2 Partners said during a subcommittee meeting of New Canaan’s legislative body. “So whatever the Historical Society or the group of New Canaan residents who feel it should be taken care of, we are in favor of that,” he said at the Town Council Subcommittee on Infrastructure and Utilities meeting, held at Town Hall.