The Mission of Preservation Chelsea

It is our mission to preserve Chelsea as a village rich with history and charm, reflected by historic buildings, surrounding farmlands, and as found in our beautiful and vibrant village center. We aim to work through education, offering to ourselves and the community the history of Chelsea as well as the issues shaping our future. We intend actively to preserve historic landmarks and to have a voice in all issues that affect any possible de-centralization of our village. It is our intention to pursue this mission with full involvement and input from merchants and citizens of Chelsea and to act in ways that make sense for the preservation of Chelsea's charm and historic integrity while supporting a vibrant and successful downtown.

Federal Screw Works

Federal Screw Works
This property has been under threat of total demolition since 2008--there are historically signficant and architecturally interesting sections that should be preserved!

Jackson Street Panorama

Jackson Street Panorama
The DDA voted at the meeting on 9.20.12 to demolish the Daniels Addition Car Showroom despite the letter from the State Historic Preservation Office. (please read below)

Monday, July 20, 2015

Chelsea Update--July 20, 2015

Longworth Alley plans.
Longworth Alley plans.
As the Chelsea Downtown Development Authority tries to sell the Mack Building, members of Preservation Chelsea implored them make structural improvements to the building and do a better job of marketing the building it bought about six years ago.
Now that the Longworth Alley project is complete, during public comment, Tom Girard of Preservation Chelsea told the DDA that it was time to focus on selling the Mack Building.
He said since the DDA purchased the property at 100 Jackson St., it’s “condition has gone straight downhill” and he urged the board to “make the property viable.” Among his suggestions were protecting it from the weather with a new roof and “getting it structurally sound” for its sale.Among his suggestions were protecting it from the weather with a new roof and “getting it structurally sound” for its sale.
He urged them “don’t tear it down, make it economically viable for a developer.”

The city has issued an request for proposal for its sale with a deadline of no later than Aug. 14 at 1 p.m. In addition, the city is having a professional appraisal done, which is expected to be completed by Aug. 12.
Cathy Bean, also a member of Preservation Chelsea, sent the DDA a 3-page letter reminding them of the history and importance of the building. In the letter she said, “We acknowledge that the Mack Building is in need of extensive renovation, but we believe that [it] can be renovated and will continue to be an asset to the city.”

While acknowledging that an RFP for the building had been posted on the city website, the letter stated “in order to optimize the pool of potential buyers, the DDA needs to make a further financial investment …”
The letter asks the DDA to immediately address the building’s safety concerns to “allow prospective buyers to safely tour the site.” Also suggested was that the city list the property with a realtor on list it on specific preservation websites plus, place “for sale” signs on the building.  Among the other suggestions were to market the building to firms that specialize in adaptive reuse and add a history of the building to the city’s RFP. The letter also suggests the DDA “Sell to the highest qualified bidder without imposing unrealistic financial restrictions, and be open to public-private partnerships.”
During public comment, Jan Bernath also urged the DDA to consider public/private partnerships in selling the building and push the deadline date back to allow adequate time for potential buyers to respond.
Members of Preservation Chelsea said they do not want the DDA to demolish the building and add another parking lot, saying the space would then be disconnected from the rest of the downtown.
At the end of the meeting, the DDA board discussed a work session in August before its regular Aug. 20 meeting. They want to discuss a number of smaller projects including the decorative fencing to block people from illegally crossing the railroad tracks, the stamped crosswalk project planned for the Main and Park Street intersection, additional planters for the Palmer parking lot, additional lighting on Main Street and improving the appearance of the old Federal Screw Works property.

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