In The Shadow Of Tall Buildings
As the Town Council and its Community Resources Committee, the Planning Board, and Planning Department continue to discuss possible revisions to the town’s Zoning Bylaw, one topic that keeps coming up is a proposal to create specific design guidelines that would apply to new construction, mostly in the downtown area. There is still considerable disagreement about whether such guidelines are necessary and if written, what they should specify. One concern of many downtown residents is the height of permitted buildings and what kinds of setbacks, if any, ought to be required. Frequent complaints about recent construction of apartments at Kendrick Place and One East Pleasant Street point to the shadows cast by the buildings that have no setback and come right up to the sidewalk. Imagine the kind of dark canyon it would create downtown if several of these five story buildings were constructed side by side, critics say. At last week’s Town Council meeting, this grim vision was raised once again but was quickly dismissed by Councilor Steve Schreiber (District 4) who responded that people “are always talking about the shadows that Kendrick Place and One East Pleasant cast on the street, but that is impossible since the buildings are on the east side of the street, so the only shadows possible would be cast at sunrise.” This contrasted with the experiences of several of our readers and they took to East Pleasant Street with their cameras to make a counter claim. We provide some of the submissions of Cathy Schoen and Kitty Axelson-Berry here.
Our feature, Photo of the Week, presents each week, a new picture by a local photographer. We invite local photographers to share their photographs here. Please include a description/caption and an indication of who is to be credited.