59 Williams Street / 6 John Street

8/25/2020 Update:

The development team returned to the Historic District Commission in August with a redesign for the relocation and addition of the cottage at 59 Williams Street. While an improvement, PPS joined others in questioning the necessity of the relocation, albeit on site, of the cottage, which seems to not meet the HDC’s own standards and guidelines. The commissioners were receptive to the changes, but voted to again continue the project until September — at which point the developer can likely seek final, rather than conceptual, approval. The developer indicated that in September the HDC can also expect to review the new construction (a two-family townhouse) at 6 John Street.

8/24/2020 Update:

The development team returns to HDC with a redesigned proposal for 59 Williams, involving the on-site relocation of the cottage, an addition, and a detached carport. You can find the HDC staff report and the applicant’s submission here.

To log onto the HDC meeting and provide public comment, see the instructions under Virtual Meetings.

7/28/2020 Update: After hearing from several concerned neighbors, the HDC voted yesterday to continue the application 59 Williams Street for the onsite relocation of a 19th c. cottage and the new construction of an addition and detached garage. The applicant is expected to return to HDC in August with a revised plan. The related proposal for new construction of a 2-family residence at 6 John Street is also expected to be on the August agenda.

7/27/20 Update: Later today, the Historic District Commission will consider conceptual approval for the onsite relocation of a Victorian cottage at 59 Williams Street plus new construction of an addition and detached two-bay garage. In June, the HDC granted approval for demolition for the existing four-bay garage. This application is related to proposed new construction at 6 John Street, which will be heard separately by HDC in August.

Scroll down on this site for the HDC agenda, meeting materials, and instructions for attending the virtual meeting.

Read PPS’s full statement about both proposals here.

7/10/20 Update:

Two related applications were continued at the June HDC meeting. PPS understands that the proposal for the onsite relocation of an existing cottage and new construction of an addition and garage at 59 Williams Street will be on the July HDC agenda. Demolition of the garage was the only item that was voted on and passed in June. The proposal for construction of a two-family residence at 6 John Street is expected to be continued until August. PPS and Ward 1 Councilman John Goncalves continue hear from and work with concerned neighbors.

Monday’s (7/13) Fox Point Neighborhood Association meeting (via Zoom) will feature a presentation by the project architect. We encourage all concerned citizens to attend. RSVP here.

Cottage and garage on Williams St.

Two items appeared on the June agenda of the Historic District Commission (HDC) that represent the breadth of activity that can take place in local historic districts: demolition, relocation, new construction, and additions to existing structures. The good news is that these parcels are within the College Hill Local Historic District and, therefore, these changes and other exterior alterations are reviewed and scrutinized by the HDC staff and commissioners.

Site map (not to scale)

The two related projects on John and Williams Streets have drawn much attention. At HDC, the development team received approval to demolish a 20th c. garage on Williams Street, but their application to relocate and add to the Victorian cottage on Williams Street and preliminary review of new construction on John Street were continued to the next HDC meeting. A discrepancy regarding the parcel map — from the CPC-approved resubdivision (March 2019) creating three lots from two — was the source of dispute.

PPS is working with concerned neighbors and elected officials to improve communication and understanding between the development team and abutting property owners.

We encourage you to read the HDC Standards and Guidelines to understand the major and minor alterations, site improvements, and more that are under the purview of the HDC.

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