To The Daily Sun,
I am writing to ask Gilmanton voters to please vote "Yes" and support Articles 5 and 6 on the Town Ballot. By voting "Yes" you will allow two Meeting House Road property owners to remove themselves from the Historic District zone. I am urging you to vote yes because I don't feel the Historic District should be placing a hardship on property owners.
One property owner at 533 Meeting House Road installed a beautiful white fence to keep his dogs from running around the neighborhood. The fence is attached to his house and is hundreds of feet off the road, yet the Historic District members find it to be offensive because it is made of vinyl and not wood. The district is requiring the owner to tear it down and erect a "historical" wooden fence. When the owner paints the wooden fence white it will look exactly the same as the vinyl fence, but he will have spent double for the same outcome.
Take a ride by this property at 533 Meeting House Road and decide for yourself if the fence is offensive. Looks beautiful to me, and I respect the homeowner for not wanting his dogs to run free and be a nuisance to neighbors.
The second property is at 485/493 Meeting House Road. This homeowner is trying to replace his attic windows and wants to install vinyl insulated windows at a cost of $168 each.
However, the Historic District is demanding that he use wood windows which he has priced at $673 each. Why would anyone want to demand this of someone when in the end they will both look the same at a fraction of the price? It seems as though you have to be wealthy to live in the Historic District with all the stipulations placed upon you.
The problem I see is the Historical zoned area on Meeting House Road must have been put in place without much thought. There is a mobile home situated between the two homes in question. Even I can figure out that a mobile home is not historical. So my question is, why include it in the Historic District? Many of the homes within this district are new homes and as far as I can see there are only three homes that date back to "historical times."
Why not change the boundaries of the Historic zone to include only the Smith Meeting House and Church grounds, as they are historic buildings with a great history and should be protected.
I know about the Historical District first hand. I grew up in one of the big old colonial homes in Gilmanton Corners. Many years ago my parents asked to be voted out of the District and were approved. They didn't want anyone telling them what kind of windows they had to put in their chicken coop.
Please allow the owners on Meeting House Road to install a fence and change their windows without having the Historic District deny them the privilege. Vote "Yes" on Articles 5 and 6.
Brenda McClary Currier