NORWAY — Future restoration plans for the Gingerbread House will be unveiled at a meeting on Tuesday, July 24.
Margaret Gaertner of the Portland firm of Barba and Wheelock Architects will reveal the 33-page plan for the rehabilitation of Norway’s 1850s landmark building known as the Gingerbread House at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Norway Historical Society. The society is at the corner of Main and Whitman streets.
Gaertner, who researched and wrote the three-phase plan for the building last winter, will present a summary.
“This plan will guide the Norway Landmarks Preservation Society board members in overseeing and budgeting the building's preservation,” said Andrea Burns, president of Norway Downtown, who from the start stressed the importance of having a professional preservation plan to guide the work.
In November 2009, the Gingerbread House Task Force officially incorporated as a nonprofit organization with a new name, the Norway Landmarks Preservation Society, dba Friends of the Gingerbread House.
Burns said the sequence of the preservation work is approached methodically and according to the most significant need, which in this case is to halt further deterioration of the building. Burns said the future use of the building has not been determined.
In June 2011 James G. Merry Building Movers of Scarborough moved the Gingerbread House from its original site behind the Advertiser-Democrat Block at the corner of Pikes Hill and Main Street to its new home 950 feet up Main Street by Butters Park, after a group of volunteers, the Friends of the Gingerbread House, banded together to save the landmark building.
C's Inc., which is a real estate holding company affiliated with Sun Media Group, publishers of the Sun Journal and Advertiser-Democrat, agreed late in 2008 to delay a planned demolition of the building if anyone could successfully figure out a way to move the massive house off-site.
There has been a lot of activity in recent months at the building and behind the scenes for the Friends of the Gingerbread House, Anne Siekman said.
A concrete floor was poured in the basement, a granite retaining wall was built, underground connections for water and sewer hookups were installed and drainage was installed around the foundation. This week bricks were laid to cover the cinder block foundation by Wells & Son Masonry in Turner.
The public is encouraged to join the Friends of the Gingerbread House for the preservation plan presentation and to hear an update on the work at the building since it was moved last summer.
Gingerbread refreshments will be served to celebrate the first year of the house in its new location. More information is available at wwww.gingerbreadhousenorway.org or by contacting Pat Shearman at 743-0505.