Sunday, December 31, 2006

The View No Longer Is Pleasant

The American Saltbox architectural design dates back to the colonial era. It was popular throughout the 17th, 18th and early 19th centuries and its style was purely functional. The houses were built no higher than two floors with an attic and central chimney, and were small in area in order to conserve heat in the winter. The roof would slope down almost to the ground on the north side to serve as a windbreak, which created a shed-like structure where the kitchen would usually be located. The name “saltbox” comes from the asymmetrical shape of the house, which was said to resemble that of receptacles of the time period that were used to store salt. This house stood on the north side of Metropolitan Avenue at the corner of Pleasantview Street.
Once again, a relic of our community’s past was demolished in the name of progress. In 1986, a 49-unit condominium, which looks more like a prison with balconies, was erected in place of the saltbox house and some of its neighbors. This is one of the most extreme examples of over-development in Middle Village.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

So when they put this up, did the community board ask if there was enough school desks, hospital beds, fire houses, etc?

Or did they remain mute when the developer showed up and simply rubber stamped this junk?

Do they realize that by doing this, they opened themselves to charges that they potentially endangered the lives of their own community's residents?

A system is corrupt when one developer's interests is held more important than an entire community's health and welfare.

Did anyone ask the community board why it was ok to destroy the community's heritage?

Oh, or couse not. Why do we want to give them information that would upset them?

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't Queens Crap contact the community board and ask them why they did this?

Let them hang themselves with their own rope.

Bob from Middle Village said...

Who is responsible for the uglification of our neighborhoods? It is fun and easy (and very correct) to point fingers at Gallagher, Katz, the Community Board and others. But, just remember to ask: "Who owned and then sold the property to some developer?" Who was looking for top dollar once they decided to move from the community?

Just remember: we property owners can place restrictive covenants on our property that limit its use for homes such as the original.

Even if you depart the community (by moving van or hearse), perform one final good deed for those who remain.

Anonymous said...

The problem is the value system of the public culture that is encouraged. Public policy can easily outlined to encourage owner-occupied housing and the retention of solid building stock.

Instead, the public culture encourages everyone to regard their homes as a strip mine. Dig a hole and take out the gold, then run and leave a mess for someone else to clean up.

From now on, everyone that runs for office or serves on a community board, should be quizzed on these issues and their values be made public.

Then they should be reminded of their words time and time again.

Names of those on the community boards, for example, that vote for this crap should be made public and listed on Queens Crap.

Afterwards, friends and neighbors should be encouraged to have a chat with these people and make public their discussions here. It would be interesting opportunity to cast some light on the process for these back door deals.

That would add a welcome dimension to this board.

And perhaps if people knew their actions would be subject to public review by their community, would be less anxious to rubber stamp something that benefits someone else (who as often as not, doesn't even live in the community)