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George Washington slept here – or was it over there?

12/15/2014 | Real Estate Blog

You cannot swing a quitclaim deed in Philadelphia without hitting something with historical significance. Developers and lawmakers often find themselves at loggerheads with preservations when it comes to altering or razing a building from the Revolutionary War or an inn where George Washington stopped for a beer. Ardrossan Farm is no exception.

In our Dec. 8 post, we were talking about the decision of the Radnor Board of Commissioners to approve a new development on the property. The approval process has been colorful, to say the least.

Residents in the area have fought any changes to the 311-acre property pretty much from the start. The open space provides existing homes with terrific views. They do not want to see the view spoiled and their property values decline as a result.

Preservationists — a group that includes some residents — have argued that the site’s history is worth saving. The first arguments were to save the main house and outbuildings.

Edgar Scott III, the developer/owner, is an heir to the family that made the place famous, and he is acting on behalf of the family trust that owns the land. His plan keeps the house, some other buildings and the 10 acres surrounding the structures as is and in the family trust.

With the historically significant buildings saved, Scott must have thought his main opposition had been whittled down to the residents and their concerns about the viewshed. Unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case.

Before the commissioners’ approved the plan, a group of residents lobbied to have either the approval vote or the project itself suspended until archaeologists have a chance to investigate the site. The group is also hoping the federal government will intervene to preserve the land in case there are significant artifacts somewhere on the property.

We’ll explain more in our next post.

Source: Main Line Media News, “Radnor residents want archaeological dig at Ardrossan,” Linda Stein, Sept. 17, 2014