For the second time in the past few weeks, a scheduled public meeting (this one on Wednesday, Aug 21) by the Historic District Commission to discuss the preservation options of the circa-1760 Thomas Clark House was cancelled a few days before the event.
"We are working through some issues involving various stakeholders," said Mike Smith, chairman of the Historic District Commission which first raised the alarm of the house's prospects in August 2011 when the land which the house had been sited since before the War of Independence was sold to a developer.
"Until there is more clarity we think it is best to postpone the meeting," said Smith.The rescinded invitation brings into question the future prospects of the pre-Revolutionary farm house that in 2011 was rescued from being reduced into a debris pile through a Herculean community response led by Smith.
The 260-year-old structure was gingerly moved in February 2012 a half-a-mile from its long-time homestead on Common Street to its now long-term "temporary" location adjacent to the White Field House across Concord Avenue from the Underwood Pool.
Yet since the move 18 months ago, the grey two-story colonial has been stuck in place on town-owned land as the Historic District Commission and the current titleholder, The Architectural Heritage Foundation, have worked continuously to find a permanent home for the residence.
Yet as Smith and Foundation President Sean McDonnell told a public meeting in July, efforts to place the house in several locations in town including the most promising across Concord Avenue at the First Armenian Church of Belmont, had fallen through. This comes as the Foundation faces a $10,000 insurance payment in September to the town for using its property.
At the time last month, Smith said a plan would need to be resolved by Sept. 1.
"That's a real deadline for us," said McDonnell.