The log cabin at 307 Cabin Road SE has survived for over 80 years, but it couldn’t survive development plans to subdivide the lot it sits on.
Last night (Monday), the Vienna Town Council voted to approve a subdivision of the cabin that would ultimately result in its destruction. But like the Planning Commission at their meeting in November, the Town Council couldn’t find a compelling reason to deny the application, which cabin-aside would be an otherwise unremarkable request.
The cabin is not a designated historic location, which means it has no legal protections. Members of the Town Council noted that it was one of several buildings in the town that have some historic relevance but not enough to protect or have an impact on the local community.
There is also the issue that the building is also in poor shape, with rotting wood and a fragile structure. The owner of the site told the council that the building could not be saved.
“This does mean things to the community,” Councilmember Carey Sienicki. “We heard from citizens that this is an important structure. Unfortunately, it was in disrepair. It can’t be moved.”
Instead, some of the logs from the site may be salvaged as it is taken apart. The council also proposed working with Historic Vienna to preserve pieces of the building and erect a plaque, either at the site or at a display the Freeman Store and Museum.
Members of the council lamented that while the developer American Signature Properties had said they were amenable to historic research and preservation as long as it didn’t interfere with development plans, representatives of the group at earlier meetings concerning the cabin had showed little interest in any form of preservation.
Town Attorney Steve Briglia told council members that there was very little the town could do to force the developer to engage in preservation measures for the cabin.
Photo via Town of Vienna