Despite getting nod for bed and breakfast, property for sale

By Beth A. Birmingham | Sep 07, 2018
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham A for sale sign sits on the front lawn of 29 Green St., Thomaston, Sept. 6. This is despite property owner Maria Gionis Fournier's being given the go-ahead to make it a bed-and-breakfast inn following two fairly heated meetings before the Planning Board.

Thomaston — The property at 29 Green St., whose owners had been under fire from several residents for proposing a bed-and-breakfast inn, is now up for sale

Owner Maria Gionis Fournier received approval for the conditional use from the Planning Board at its meeting July 26, at which approximately 30 residents were present as the board reviewed several sections of the Land Use Ordinance specifically dealing with the conversion of an existing residential structure and determining what amounts to "substantial alterations."

That meeting followed a site walk July 23 by the board, which was open to the public. Several neighbors from the Green and Hyler Street area attended, and voiced their displeasure at the external alterations that had been made. They believed the stairs and decks substantially altered the home so it no longer looked like a single-family home.

A section in the town's Land Use Ordinance addressing bed-and-breakfast/tourist homes states, "There shall be no exterior changes to the street front of the residence. Other exterior alterations shall be limited to those required to comply with applicable health, building and fire-safety codes and shall not substantially alter the single-family appearance of the residence."

Fournier offered alterations that had been discussed at the site walk, including removing a set of stairs and deck on the front of the house (Green Street).

After completing the Conditional Use Check Off and Findings of Fact, the board gave unanimous approval with several conditions that Fournier agreed to, much to the disappointment of many in attendance.

Board Chairman Joanne Richards said she had noticed the sign this week, and did not know if the actions of Fournier's neighbors had anything to do with the decision to sell.

"The meeting, as you remember, was not kind to her or her father," Richards said in an email.

A request for comment from Fournier has not been replied to.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at bbirmingham@villagesoup.com.

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