Wow, did I ever come away mighty depressed after going to the Public Hearing at the Newburyport Planning Board for the subdivision proposal by Mr. Todd-Fremont Smith, Wills Lane LLC, regarding the back of the Wheelwright property.
I had this vague chirpy notion that after the last hostile greeting that Mr. Fremont-Smith received at the last Newburyport Planning Board Public Hearing, that Mr. Fremont-Smith would have made some revisions to his plans for the property adjacent to the historic and sacred Oak Hill Cemetery.
And as I listen to the presentation, and Mr. Fremont-Smith’s refusal to at least remove one of the dwellings to make the whole thing a tiny bit more palatable, my mood grew fowler and fowler.
Map of the proposed subdivision
This image is courtesy of the Newburyport Preservation Trust. If you click on the image on the Newburyport Preservation Trust page you will get a map of the complete plot plan.
In an earlier time, given the mood of the crowd, this young man would have been tarred and feathered for his audacity to build on the legacy of Newburyport, MA.
That was then, this is now.
But Mr. Fremont-Smith apparently just doesn’t get it. And short of legal action to find some sort loophole that will stop his plans (the Conservation Law Foundation gives out advice about this sort of thing for free) or wilting under a high profile public relations assault, that was promised by one of the more talented members of our community, there appears to be no hope.
Alas and alack.