LETTER: A Historic Property on the National Register of Historic Places, No Place for a ‘Supermarket”

Letter to the editor submitted by Andrea Edwards Anthony, Oct 13, 2016

Citizens Respond, and a Treasure CAN Be Saved (AGAIN!)

In a July 4, 1999 article, the New York Times wrote, “A Church Responds, and a Treasure Is Saved,” reporting the rescue of the 100+ year old Tomes-Higgins House from being torn down or sold for real estate.

In 1979 the parishioners of Christ Church decided to raise several million dollars to renovate, instead of destroy, this Victorian house which is on the National Register of Historic Places in our Putnam Hill Historic District. They gave up easy money in order to SAVE HISTORY.

But! What has happened? For the past year the Church has been planning with Neighbor to Neighbor to essentially decimate the 5-acre property which surrounds this house.

They want to squeeze in a 6,300 sq. ft. building for Neighbor to Neighbor’s rather large client base. Using NTN’s own words, they call it a “supermarket.”

Well, hardly an appropriate use to be built on historic property; and which involves building another driveway, 19 parking spaces, multiple weekly deliveries of meat, milk, produce and clothing, garbage pickup, to say nothing of increased traffic congestion on Post Road and diminishing the Tomes-Higgins House. NTN, most definitely a worthwhile charity, belongs in a more central area where it can better serve their growing number of clients from Port Chester, Stamford, and Greenwich.

What has happened?! … to the Church which once proudly saved this JEWEL? Such a wonderful Church with wonderful people.

Citizens have been speaking out for a year! Planning and Zoning Commission: HELLO! can you hear us? We implore you to uphold the R-20 residential zoning and say NO to this quasi-commercial building. Citizens: HELLO! can you immediately speak with your local politicians and try to right this wrong? P&Z will make its decision on October 18. Time is of the essence. A Treasure Can Be Saved (AGAIN!)

Andrea Edwards Anthony
5 Putnam Hill