From the Star Ledger:
John Skillin lives across from a century-old Montclair home that once belonged to a West Point graduate named Maj. Blanton C. Welsh, a research scientist whose later study of plant algae resulted in the discovery of a new species that bears his name, Welshite.
Yet the nine-bedroom Dutch Colonial -- hawked in a real estate listing as "truly one of the Fathers of Montclair" -- is destined to fall to a wrecker's claw to make way for five luxury townhouses.
He doesn't want to see it happen. It might not.
The Upper Mountain Avenue property is one of as many as 200 on the verge of "downzoning," an action that would effectively prevent anything more than a two-family there. Yet as in many things, real estate in particular, timing is everything.
Teardowns in Montclair -- most recently one of a circa 1887 house on nearby North Mountain Avenue -- have heightened talk of remedies to head them off.
"Can we establish some kind of moratorium on teardowns?" Mayor Ed Remsen asked Karen Kadus, the director of planning and development, at a recent meeting.
The house, most recently listed at $869,000, was described as built "of the finest material and architectural specifications."
"The restoration is to period and mostly complete," the listing said.