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As a Cambridge real estate agent, the city squares of Cambridge, Somerville and Medford and the town centers of Arlington, Watertown and Belmont, Massachusetts are my home turf. And as a lifelong New Englander who’s lived within twenty miles of Boston most of my life, I can introduce you to other nearby towns as we search for your new home. If you’re planning to sell your home in Cambridge, MA or nearby you’ll find plenty of info about the home selling process here too. Questions? Send me an email or call me at 617-504-1737.

Documenting Belmont Buildings Destined for Demolition

26 Harris St, Belmont, MA

26 Harris St, Belmont, MA

 Documenting Belmont Buildings Destined for Demolition  Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to visualize a building once it’s gone?

This happens to me even on streets I drive down every day.

When all that’s left is a gaping cellar hole, or there’s a new building on the lot where an old one once stood – you scratch your head and ask “What was here before?”

And in recent years with teardowns becoming all too frequent our architectural memory becomes even more fractured.

The Belmont Historical Society has started a project to photograph the houses destined for demolition.

566 Trapelo Rd in Waverly Square

566 Trapelo Rd in Waverly Square

The program began in 2008 and I would imagine was prompted in part by the outcry about the Belmont Hill School’s demolition of  what may have been New England’s first Modernist house, designed by architect Eleanor Raymond.

There are only two photographs on the Society’s webpage for the project, both from 2008.  Perhaps with the real estate market upheaval demolitions paused in Belmont in 2009 – I don’t know. Hopefully the project is ongoing.

Check out the photos of demolished Belmont houses on the Belmont Historical Society’s website.  One is a sweet bungalow, the other a two-story mansard with turret in Waverley Square.  The buildings that replaced them can be seen at right

Not that a photograph is enough. But it’s a start.  And maybe with enough Before and Afters we’ll think a little longer about allowing our older, smaller houses to disappear one by one.


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