The stately Newton Senior Center at 345 Walnut Street visually anchors one end of Newtonville's village center, while the Masonic building anchors the other end. It gives symmetry and beauty to the street. Constructed in 1938, the iconic building represents the contribution of government and people in the struggle to overcome the Great Depression. It is a part of our cultural, social, and architectural history. Its loss would diminish Newtonville.
The building's interior needs significant change. It is no longer adequate to our seniors' needs. But while we need improved internal space, we must keep the historic character of the outside intact, not demolish it, as has recently been proposed. Here's why.
* Newtonville will lose a significant architectural and historic landmark.
* The new façade would seriously compromise the street's visual coherence.
* We would lose the current setback, the front mini-park and other much needed green/open space.
* The building demolition violates the Comprehensive Plan goal that "new development should not damage the valued qualities of that which exists in the vicinity."
Please maintain the facade of this important historic asset in Newtonville.