Readers had to reflect hard on last week’s photo challenge.
Peter Barlow’s intriguing image showed homes and office near Belden Place, reflected in the glass of the green office building that hulks on Gorham Island, off Parker Harding Plaza.
Fred Cantor, Michael Calise, Stephanie Ehrman and Mary Ann Batsell guessed Belden Place/215 Main Street. But Edward Bloch and Joelle Harris Malec were most precise, noting the reflective building (which replaced a much more bucolic Victorian house, more than 30 years ago). Click here for the great photo, and all guesses.
This week’s photo challenge has a twist. Barbara Sherburne sent me a gorgeous watercolor, by Mitchell Hager. She thinks she knows where it is — but she’s not sure.
If you know, click “Comments” below. Then tell us a bit more about the house!
Westport is about to lose 14 more very affordable housing units.
And downtown is set to lose 2 more pieces of its history.
Applications have been filed to demolish 2 buildings: #7 and #15 Belden Place. That’s the tiny, seldom-noticed piece of Main Street property just past Avery Place, opposite Veterans Green and Town Hall.
Supposedly, a developer plans to expand 201 Main Street — the former Nappa screen repair shop — and level the Belden Place rentals behind it, to create the required parking spots.
15 Belden place sits right on the Saugatuck River.
#15 is listed in the Westport Historic District Commission inventory. It sits on the bank of the Saugatuck River (with quite a view!).
Though the HDC says #15 was built around 1930, that may be the date it arrived here. It might have been moved from New Hampshire in pieces in the ’30s by Alfred G. Violet. It has long been said that the houses on Violet Lane — not far away, off Myrtle Avenue — which he built in 1928 also came from New Hampshire.
#7 was built in 1920.
Both Belden Place buildings are in disrepair. For years, however, they provided hidden-in-plain-sight, much-needed rental units for local restaurateurs, artists, teachers, hippies and whatnot.
7 Belden Place is behind 201 Main Street (formerly Nappa Doors and Windows), and in front of 15 Belden Place.
As Westport prepares to lose more affordable housing units, it should be noted that because these 14 were built before 1990, they do not count toward our 8-30g requirements. So losing them will not hurt us as we try to comply with the state affordable housing mandate.
But losing them will certainly hurt the Westporters who lived there, up until recently when they were told to go.
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