Homes along Washington Street, in the borough’s designated historic district, would be affected by the ordinance, as would properties beyond the district’s borders. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)
The home of Paul and Nancy Cagno, at the corner of Wallace and Mount streets, above, and the circa 1903 mansion that’s now the office of Smallwood Wealth Management, at 199 Broad Street, below, were among the four structures cited. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
Kicking off what members hope to become an annual series, the commission honored property owners in four categories for “adding to the value of Red Bank by adding to the character” of the town, in the words of Chairwoman Michaela Ferrigine.
The Broad Street home of the Woman’s Club of Red Bank is in line for some spruce-up funds from Freehold. (Click to enlarge)
The Woman’s Club of Red Bank and three historic structures in Shrewsbury are among the local nonprofits set to share in $71,200 in grants awarded by the Monmouth County Historical Commission, the county government announced Friday.
Red Bank’s oldest house, on South Street, was finally put on the state’s list of historic places last week. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
A tour of Mary Gilligan’s South Street home is, quite literally, a trip back in time, starting with the walk up the driveway, as you take a look at the white Dutch Colonial. The upstairs windows, shrunken versions of the ones downstairs, are the first sign that something is different about this house.
Is that a one-story or two-story? Actually, it’s a one-and-a-half story.
Then you walk through the front door, which can only be unlocked with a skeleton key, and walk on wide wooden floor boards that have been there since the 1790s. Through a couple short doorways “For anybody above my height, the rule is, watch your head,” the vertically-challenged Gilligan said to the kitchen, where Gilligan uses a wooden chopping block and slaughter table, which have been in the home for centuries, to store various kitchen items. Eighteenth century families did not have CuisinArt collections or varieties of Swiffer’s to amass, so storage space is at a premium in Gilligan’s home.
“The hope is to have more cabinets so I can actually put things away,” she said.
One project at a time. Her most recent feat came last week when the house, the oldest in Red Bank, was accept to the New Jersey Register of Historic Places, an endeavor six years in the making.
The lot, at the corner of East Front and Washington Streets, has been vacant since a Victorian home was demolished in 2005. (Click to enlarge)
Last week, redbankgreenreported that a Monmouth County architect had met recently with historic preservation advocates in Red Bank about building a four-unit condo project on a vacant lot at the corner of East Front and Washington streets.
The meeting was a courtesy call of sorts. Brendan McHugh, a Manasquan-based architect working for an unidentified prospective buyer and developer of the site, sat down with members of the boroughs Historic Preservation Commission to give them a heads-up and get early feedback on the plan. He hadn’t, and still hasn’t, filed any formal proposal with the town.
An architect has drawn up plans for townouses for a vacant lot in Red Bank’s historic district, but nothing has been filed with the borough. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
A vacant lot in Red Bank’s historic district could become the site of townhouse-style condos if informal plans now in the works gel.
Brendan McHugh, a Manasquan-based architect, has drawn up plans for a four-unit project at the corner of East Front and Washington streets, and recently made an informal pitch about his plans to the borough’s Historic Preservation Commission.
Historic Preservation Commission members Ed Zipprich, Michaela Ferrigine and George Bowden outside a old house on Washington Street. (Click to enlarge)
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
It took a couple of years of legwork and hustle, but the efforts of the Red Bank Historic Preservation Commission paid off in June when the Borough Council passed an ordinance designating the Washington Street District as the borough’s first residential historic zone.
What they’ll receive on behalf of the borough tonight is like, well, the slate roof on a gingerbread Victorian.
Commission chairman George Bowden, Councilman Ed Zipprich and others are scheduled to appear at the Monmouth County Planning Board‘s annual awards ceremony at PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel tonight.
They’ll be there to collect a Planning Merit Award, an honor given to towns that the board feels have made significant and positive impacts to their respective communities, said Laura Kirby, assistant planner for the county.
Peeling paint and rotting wood at the Red Bank train station have preservationists worried about “demolition by neglect.” (Click to enlarge)
Red Bank’s Historic Preservation Commission has gone on the offensive against New Jersey Transit, owner of the borough train station, for what it calls apparently “intentional” lack of maintenance.
The agency’s failure to replace a failing asphalt shingle roof or do basic painting on the circa 1875 structure constitutes “demolition by neglect,” leaving the building in “such a deteriorated state that Transit will insist they have no other option other than to demolish the structure,” the commission says in a letter presented to the borough council Monday night.
Historic Preservation Commission chairman George Bowden spoke about the new Washington Street historic district.
Elected officials approved Red Bank’s first residential historic district Tuesday night at a fast-paced session.
With Council President Art Murphy sitting in for an absent Mayor Pasquale Menna, the borough council also heard a glowing review of the government’s financial systems and cleared the way for a September event at Riverside Gardens Park that had raised concerns. More →
Attendees found seats wherever they could, even on the stairs of the restored former Anthony Reckless homestead, better known as the Woman’s Club of Red Bank.
By JoANN PILEGGI
Money woes are putting the brakes on pet projects all over New Jersey, but that didn’t stop historical preservation activists from packing the Woman’s Club of Red Bank on Saturday.
It was standing room only at the annual meeting of Preservation New Jersey, the membership-supported historic preservation organization that in 2007 dubbed Red Bank’s T. Timothy Fortune house one of of the state’s ten most-endangered historical properties.
Considering its dire implications, the news earlier this month that a Red Bank house had been had been designated one of New Jersey’s 10 most endangered historic sites was oddly encouraging to a near-octagenarian with a weatherbeaten voice and fu manchu straight out of the ’60s.
Oddly, that is, because inclusion on the list put together by Preservation New Jersey provides no guarantees that the house will be saved. It offers no legal leverage against a present or future owner who might decide to knock the house down. There’s no money in it, either.
In sum, the appellation is as toothless as a newborn.
Yet George Bowden was ecstatic. He’d known that the house, once the home of pioneering African-American newspaperman T. (Timothy) Thomas Fortune, might land on the list, but asked that that not be publicized until it was official, after which “we can blow it sky high,” he told redbankgreen with characteristic enthusiasm.
Once it was announced, Bowden started making plans to leverage the endorsement of historians across the state. He began planning outreach to community groups, leaders of African-American congregations he’s even reached out to Oprah. Whatever it takes to get the word out.
“You can try to prevent it through the press, or local support,” he says, “but there’s no legal groundwork for preventing demolition.”
The Red Bank Historic Inventory would grow to 80 properties with the inclusion of ten newor actually, oldproperties under a proposal to the council by the borough’s Historic Preservations Commission.
Layli White of The Hub has a story today. From her report:
The new additions to the inventory, all private residences, would include: 20 Alston Court, 1 Hilltop Terrace, 15 Hilltop Terrace, 45 North Prospect Ave., 117 Prospect Ave., 35 Rector Place, 62-62B W. Front St., 65 W. Front St. (Trinity Episcopal Church), 32 Shrewsbury Ave. and 47 Wallace St.
Bowden said that 1 Hilltop Terrace was one of the properties worth a special mention because it was a service building for a large, Mediterranean-style estate that once stood nearby.
“The main house had 22 rooms,” said Bowden. “Can you imagine having a party in a house like that?”