Good article from the Medfield Press – the Clark Tavern now appears headed to becoming a private residence (to which the public will not have access).
LCB has purchased the old Clark Tavern.
LCB has purchased the old Clark Tavern. The company plans on fixing up the historic building and to plant a lot of pine trees on the property.
LCB has purchased the old Clark Tavern.John and Michelle Linnert have sold the Clark Tavern to LCB after giving up on their plans for the historic building that were tied up in the state’s land court for the past few years.
By Adam Stuhlman
Posted Mar. 17, 2016 at 8:42 AM
LCB Director of Corporate and Marketing Affairs Ted Doyle said his company has agreed to a purchase and sale agreement to take ownership of the historic Clark Tavern off Route 109 as part of their plan to develop a senior citizen assisted living facility on 361-363A Main Street. Of the 14.7 acres LCB owns, Doyle said that 2.7 acres would be developed, leaving approximately 12 acres unused.
Doyle anticipates LCB closing on the property during the summer.
Many Medfield residents are concerned about the proposed development and the effect it would have on the Clark Tavern and the Peak House. Residents want both historic buildings and the land they sit on protected.
John and Michelle Linnert sold LCB the Clark Tavern. They originally wanted to use the tavern, which today is in rough shape, as a restaurant and a multi-use function facility, according to a March 13, 2015 article in http://medfield.wickedlocal.com/article/20150313/News/150317844.
David Temple, president of the Medfield Historical Society, said the Linnerts bought the property several years ago. The Linnerts’ plans, which were approved by the town, were delayed in state land court on multiple occasions by objectionable neighbors. The former owners become tired of the delays and decided to sell the property to LCB.
“I’m disappointed for them because they felt that due to stalling from neighbors in court that they had enough and were going to give up,” Temple said.
While Doyle said this design enhances the proposal without changing it, Temple said he has spoken with the Linnerts in the past about the tavern and is concerned that LCB might try and do something to it.
“I am concerned about whether or not the Linnerts could put in a clause to say that nothing will happen to the building,” he said. “Could the corporate headquarters of LCB decide to take it down?”
The Linnerts did not return a call in time for print.
Doyle is seeking to alleviate the worries of residents.
“People are concerned the tavern might be torn down,” said Doyle. This is “absolutely not our intention. The whole point in doing this is to protect it.”
“This [proposal] takes that [worry] off the table. We are trying to put our best project together and we see this as a real opportunity to work well with the community. We hope this is a win/win scenario because we want to maintain it as a two-family residential use and protect it from commercial development,” said Doyle.
Doyle said this proposal addresses many concerns that the citizens have.
“The combination of the assisted living community and a residential use of the tavern represent 48 percent less weekly traffic than the (previously) approved tavern project alone,” Doyle said.
The design proposal enhances the esthetics by “eliminating 43 parking spaces next to the Peak House” and adding area lighting. This plan would allow them to save numerous trees and do extensive planting of several dozen 20-foot tall pine trees throughout the site, thus allowing “for more privacy” while addressing “the visual concerns of the project,” Doyle said.
As a part of the agreement, LCB will pledge $5,000 a year for preservation and maintenance of the Peak House for as long as the company owns the assisted living property. In addition, they will donate $10,000 worth of supplies to the Medfield Food Cupboard and an internship program for local students.
Medfield resident David Stephenson, one of the lead antagonists towards the proposed development, and said it is good news that the future of the tavern is secure even if the development moves ahead. Following the concept of real estate – location, location, location, he maintained his opposition to the assisted living facility location.
“The proposed facility’s location is unacceptable. There is no amount of fine tuning they can do that will change our opposition to this,” he said.
Doyle said that if the assisted living project is rejected by the town, LCB would sell the land and the Clark Tavern.
Follow reporter Adam Stuhlman on Twitter: @adam_wtimes