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Westonite Looks for Ways To Help Lachat Farm

Carol Baldwin of Weston is working hard to establish Save the Lachat Farm as a nonprofit organization so she can apply for grant money to fix up the property. Baldwin has received support in saving the property from multiple town organizations, including the Weston Historic District Commission and the Weston Kiwanis.

Rob Sanders, an architect from Wilton, said in a letter to Baldwin, "While the house has structural issues and unsympathetic renovations, much of the 'good old bones' remain. The foundation, sills and roof need attention to seal out the weather and reverse rot damage that's causing settlement, but that's well within the skills of a typical general contractor. The building can be stabilized and secured for a relatively small investment."

One big issue with saving the property is related to the town's agreement with the Nature Conservancy.

"We cannot discuss use of the property until we negotiate a change in agreement with the Nature Conservancy," said Gayle Weinstein, first selectwoman. Weinstein also addressed using funds for repairs that will be replaced later. "I don't want to fix a heating system that you're going to tear down and replace," she said. "Do we beautify a house that has a crumbling foundation?"

Baldwin said she spoke with neighbors who favor having a town farm on the Lachat property. "They like the idea of preserving it. One neighbor is sick of looking at it," she said.

Weinstein suggested Baldwin work with the town to apply for grants and return to the Board of Selectmen next month.

Do you think the town should stabilize the Lachat property before grants can be obtained? Leave your comments below.

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