The proposed carriage house and retaining wall at Paris Fields and Clifton Murdock’s 314 Main Street property has all the details of a historic structure including restoration glass on every window. The building will even be home to a historic automobile Fields’ grandparents owned. After two years of review the 12-by-26 foot carriage house, and retaining wall, are on the brink of approval after receiving a number of environmental permits from governmental agencies like the state Department of Environmental Conservation. But during the Monday, July 28 historic preservation and architectural review board meeting for a few moments it appeared a tree may stand in the way.
After discussing the carriage house and retaining wall, board member Robert Tortora said while he thought it was a “beautiful” carriage house, he was “very concerned” about losing any trees on the Main Street side of the property and asked if the applicants could tell the board which, if any trees, would need to be removed from the property.
Fields and Murdock’s attorney reminded that the project had been given extensive review by the DEC and even the village’s own environmental planner and was sited based on that review.
Tortora responded it appeared as if one of two maples would be lost on the property as a result of the project adding the village already lost an “important” tree on the property.
“If you want to take up my liability you take that up,” said Fields. “It could have killed someone on the street.” Fields said the tree in question, which was removed two years ago, was in fact dead and could have collapsed at any moment, objecting to Tortora even bringing it up.
“Part of our sort of purview and responsibility is about street trees and trying to maintain as much of the architecture as well,” explained board member Michael Mensch.
“This is not a tree issue,” said Fields. “We are not in front of a tree board.”
The carriage house and retaining wall were approved with the provision that should any trees need to be taken down, Fields and Murdock return to the board for their consent.
In other news, Mia Grosjean was approved for a new dormer, windows and clapboard siding at 47 Howard Street; Dragon Seed Realty at 180 Main Street was approved for a new fence and Patrick and Marie McErlean were approved for the removal of windows and the replacement of a door at 366 Division Street.