On one end of Barre's Main Street the big dig continues. It's a road and infrastructure improvement on the city's busiest street. On the other end another upgrade is underway-- this one much smaller, but historic. The century-old Aldrich building is getting a remodel-- not a facelift; this project is all internal.
"We did lose this building. As you can see, there really isn't a lot left. The fire started on the third floor of the building, but it required 1.5 to 2 million gallons of water to get the fire under control," said Barre Mayor Thom Lauzon, who owns the building.
It was Memorial Day weekend two years ago when two teenagers set the place on fire. Police say the act was a random act of arson. Lauzon was at first pessimistic the building could be saved. There was a danger the structure would fall in. Lauzon says insurance paid out $1 million, but even after state and federal tax credits, he says another million will be coming out of his pocket. It's a long-term investment and this October a tenant will be occupying the bottom floor.
Keith Paxman, the former owner of the Common Man in the Mad River Valley, and a partner will be opening a bistro/tap room called the Cornerstone. Lauzon has high hopes it will succeed in the sometimes maligned downtown. He also is the elected cheerleader for Barre.
"You know, it's just the right thing to do. I mean I'm mayor of this town and if I bailed out... if I won't have faith in this community, who the heck will," Lauzon said.
A mayor and developer bullish on Barre.
Redevelopment doesn't end at the restaurant. Lauzon plans to turn the second floor into offices and the third floor into high-end apartments.
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:57 AM EDT2013-05-23 13:57:59 GMT
Four colleges, including Dartmouth, are now facing federal complaints over their handling of rape allegations. Other colleges facing complaints include Swarthmore College, University of Southern California,More >>
Four colleges, including Dartmouth, face federal complaints over their handling of rape allegations.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:02 AM EDT2013-05-23 14:02:01 GMT
A Townshend man will be in court for breaking into a house and making himself at home. Police say last Friday and again on Wednesday, they caught 34-year-old Jesse Johnson living in another man's homeMore >>
A Townshend man will be in court for breaking into a house and making himself at home.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:07 AM EDT2013-05-23 14:07:20 GMT
Montreal officials say the water in most of the city is unsafe to drink Thursday morning. A boil order has been issued through mid-day Thursday. They report ongoing work at the country's second largestMore >>
Montreal officials say the water in most of the city is unsafe to drink due to bacteria concerns.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 12:35 PM EDT2013-05-23 16:35:41 GMT
A system of strong thunderstorms swept through our region and the threat isn't over. In Burlington, crews are trying to fix a washout at the intersection of Manhattan Drive and North Champlain Street causedMore >>
A system of strong thunderstorms swept through our region and the threat isn't over. In Burlington, officials say the heavy dumping overwhelmed drainage systems.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:09 AM EDT2013-05-23 14:09:44 GMT
Another major Vermont brand is suing over trademark infringement. Magic Hat Brewing says the logo for Kentucky-based West Sixth Brewing is a rip-off of their Number 9 beer label. Magic Hat argues theMore >>
Another major Vermont brand is suing over trademark infringement.More >>