Cazenovia It was standing room only at the Town of Cazenovia Planning Board’s public hearing on the future of the Zephaniah Comstock House Thursday, Jan. 5, in the Gothic Cottage.
The hearing was held in order to give residents a chance to comment on the possible demolition of the house, barn and shed located at 2363 Route 20, commonly referred to as the “Ender’s Property.”
The property, which is currently owned by David C. Muraco of New Venture Assets, LLC, is listed on both the National and New York State registries of historic places. Muraco had recently filed a Draft Environmental Impact Statement to raze the buildings, in hopes of developing the property into an open, green space.
The DEIS was prepared by Napierala Consulting Professional Engineers, PC. Consulting architect for Napierla, John Goodman, explained the house had undergone numerous changes since being named to the registries of historic places in 1987.
“The list of modifications that have occurred without use of historic materials and therefore have taken away the historic significance of the structure,” Goodman said. “The barn is a safety hazard and exterior of the house has been butchered.”
The demolition of the 180 year old house, barn and shed would relieve the owner of the costs of repairing and maintaining the aging structures.
The expected value and marketability of the property for a commercial use, in conformance with the Town’s Comprehensive Plan, would likely increase with the removal of the structures.
“There are no restrictions placed on private owners of registered properties,” the DEIS states. “Private property owners may sell, alter, or dispose of their property as they wish.”
The DEIS also states that the public only has visage of the property by driving by on Route 20. An aerial photo presented to the audience showed how the view of the structure is very limited.