BERLIN – While residents are eager to see renovations completed at the Main Street storefronts currently under construction, plans are still being finalized.
Since the revitalization of the structures from 19 N. Main St. to 7 N. Main Street was approved by the Berlin Historic District (HDC) this spring, town staff have fielded countless inquiries from residents and business owners asking when the work will be done.
Samantha Pielstick, property manager for the buildings that are owned by Jack Burbage, said on Tuesday the work would soon be moving ahead.
“Mr. Burbage will be moving forward with the revitalization of the buildings,” she said. “We will be submitting exteriors to the HDC for the September meeting and working on finalizing the plans to submit to the town for building permits as soon as feasible.”
In March, the HDC approved renovation plans for Burbage’s Main Street storefronts previously home to Town Center Antiques.
At the time, Pielstick told the commission there were no plans to change the second level but that the section at street level would be renovated. She said rotten wood was to be replaced and windows repaired.
In the months since, however, the storefronts have maintained the plywood-covered, partially demolished appearance they had at the time of HDC approval.
At the close of Monday’s town council meeting, a resident asked if anyone knew when the work would be complete.
According to Planning Director Dave Engelhart, the building was under contract to be sold but that he’d found out last Friday the sale had fallen through.
“The current owners are going to proceed with renovations there,” he said. “Do I know when? I’m going on their say. I’m waiting on plans.”
Ivy Wells, the town’s economic and community development director, said numerous businesses were interested in the space.
“We’ve received more inquiries than I can count to be part of our business community in that location,” she said.