The developers of the Satin Finish site are asking for permission to demolish one the most remarkable buildings in Weston, the two-storey office building at 8 Oak. The application will go before community council on January 17.
City staff recommend that the demolition be allowed, either with or without beautification agreements.
Your correspondent is boggled. The building was built in 1922, and is, to my eye, quite lovely.
Here’s a better idea than demolition.
The office is on the edge of the property; surely new construction could go around it. This older building could be used for community recreation (editing suite? dance studio?) after it was redeployed as a showroom for the development.
We would win. They would too. Using it as the showroom would demonstrate that the planners are sympathetic to Weston’s industrial history and our pride in architecture.
I bet that it’s also a lovely space. Imagine a space with wide plank flooring (a nod to the site), oak beams (a hat tip to the location) and some beautiful old bikes hanging from the window lintels (a wink to the town and city). It would be lovely.
Let me sit on a stool at a brushed steel bar and have an espresso, look leisurely at some watches or old tools under glass, and I’d buy whatever they’re selling.
But you know that’s not going to happen. They’ll demolish it.
Doing so will show that they are tone-deaf OMB litigants rather than community partners. They’ll fight the same fight they’ve fought before, spending on fees what could have gone to something beautiful. Everyone will lose.