The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, December 10, 2010

Historical Commission nixes Garden Club signage

Garden Club Civic Committee Chairman Jane Anderson asked the Historical Commission on November 30 for permission to place three signs in the rotary reading “Maintained by the Carlisle Garden Club.” Each sign would face the incoming traffic to the rotary. Anderson stated that other towns in the area have similar signs and theirs would match the style and coloring of the signs put up by the Carlisle Trails Committee.

Commission members expressed their appreciation for all that the Garden Club does in town including its work in the rotary, but said that the commission did not favor adding signage. Commissioner Peggy Hilton told Anderson, “I think highly of the Garden Club, but we’ve been working for over a year to try to rein in signage in the center.” Explained commissioner Geoffrey Freeman, “We’ve heard from a number of people who are not happy about the proliferation of signs in the center.” Chair Sylvia Sillers added, “The statue in the rotary is a memorial to the Civil War, and it goes against my grain to add advertising.”

Freeman offered, “It’s a lot of work to keep it looking beautiful, and we appreciate what the Garden Club has done.” Commission members then brainstormed about other ways the Garden Club could gain publicity. Suggestions included advertising the Garden Club’s activities in the Community Web Page of Carlisle, and providing a link from the town website to the Garden Club website.

Hilton moved that “the Historical Commission disapprove application #10-07 from the Garden Club for three signs to be placed around the rotary finding that it is not appropriate, given that the rotary is a memorial site and there is no precedent for a permanent sign of this nature in the historic district.” The motion passed unanimously.

8 Bedford Road sidewalk approval

In other business, Darragh Murphy of 8 Bedford Road approached the commission for approval of three sidewalks in her front yard. Freeman explained that he does not have any problem with the materials used for the sidewalk, but objects to the two benches in the front yard. The benches are made of stone and not easily moved so are considered permanent. He stated that he would like to see these removed to keep the simplicity of the front yard.

Murphy added that they are planning to replace the picket fence that had been on the property previously. Freeman asked if there was any documentation of the old picket fence. Murphy affirmed that there was.

Commissioner Neil Emmer moved that “the commission accept application #10-08 regarding the three walkways as specified in the drawing and shown in the photographs, and that the benches are not appropriate to the setting and are not approved therefore need to be removed.” The motion passed 4 to 1.

Murphy will need to return with drawings for the picket fence to gain approval from the commission. Before Murphy left the meeting she asked what the procedure was for an appeal. Chair Sillers replied that she would need to appeal to the Middlesex County Superior Court.

28 Concord Street - addition and deck

New residents Emily Williams and Diane Sills of 28 Concord Street approached the commission for approval of a small addition and deck to the back of the house, as well as to provide more natural light for the barn. The commission members were pleased with the plans for the small addition, but asked them to come back with more detailed drawings. Freeman said, “We would like to see architectural drawings of the entire building so we can see the building’s proportions; drawings that show sufficient detail to understand the intent.”

Emmer asserted, “This is a good start, and we want to work with you, but there is this step that is missing.” Sills and Williams agreed to find an architect and return to the next meeting with the required architectural drawings. The applicants asked for a continuation of the hearing, which will be on December 28. Commissioner Duncan Grant moved to continue the discussion at the next meeting.

The applicants will address exterior lighting and fencing to the property at a later date.

CPC representative

The Historical Commission nominated Sillers to serve on the Carlisle Community Preservation Committee for the coming year. ∆


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