Wednesday, January 13, 2010

It was reported that the contractor has accomplished very little recently due to inclement weather conditions; however, some work was accomplished on the inside steps going down into the basement of the house structure. The contractor reported the he knows someone who can build replacement windows for the house and will obtain an estimate from them. Committee member, Tom Peterson of Appalachian Sustainable Development, reported that one of the farmers who participated in the agricultural incubator program at the location last year wishes to return to farm again this year. Last year he farmed the rear plot and was a very good tenant who maintained his area well and is planning to include some heirloom crops this year. This prompted a discussion regarding the long-term vision for the site.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The committee chairman, Henry McCarthy, reported to the committee that the contractor would extend the roof for approximately $1,800. There was also a discussion about the possibility of installing a French drain ( around the perimeter of the house structure which would eliminate the need for extending the roof. No decision was made as to which option would be pursued. The chairman also asked about the danger of the in-ground irrigation freeezing. Committee member, Tom Peterson, responded that the in-ground irrigation plumbing is frost-proof and there should be no freezing problems. Recent high winds have caused some damage and the center back roof has blown off. The committeee discussed the need to complete this part of the restoration and secure the house structure for the winter. They then set the following short-term goals that are to be completed by January 15, 2010: fix the roof and replace the windows and doors in order to secure the structure, and install basic electric service. The committee also discussed the need for gutters on the house and a suggestion was made to route the water from the gutters into the old cistern located on the property. The chairman emphasized the need to establish a vision and long-term goals for this project. The committee discussed the long-term ramifications of a lease rather vs. ownership then examined a senior theses by Daniel Dart, a former VA Tech student that contains the type of research that will greatly assist the committee with the development of a vision statement, as well as, short/long-term goals and objectives. 

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

It was reported that the contractor was making good progress with the restoration work at Fairview. He is about to start chinking and still needs to extend the roof. The committee again discussed the need to document the history of the log house. Committee member, Lois Humphreys, volunteered to speak with the Washington County Historical Society ( about establishing the history and member, Judy Moore, agreed to compile the information once it is obtained. Town staff member, Sean Taylor, asked and received the committee's approval for the contractor's use of gray colored chinking and installation of roughed-in electrical service. There was a discussion on the future of using Fairview as an agricultural incubator as was done during 2009. The committee agreed that the condition of the site needs to be restored to near pristine condition then further developed in accordance with the purpose and vision to be developed by the committee. Members were asked to think about their own purpose and vision for Fairview in preparation for the next meeting on December 16, 2009.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The assembled committee discussed the progress being made at the Fairview site and the restoration work accomplished by the contractor. The committee chair agreed to conduct regular visits to the site as the work progresses. The committee also discussed the need to prepare an accurate history of the house and property, as well as, the matter of a proper sign. Town staff agreed to check with local sign companies for pricing information to report back to the committee. Also, the committee briefly discussed the matter of whether to continue the crop/farming arrangement with Appalachian Sustainable Development ( It seemed to be the consensus of group that the methodology used, as well as, the types of crops grown during 2009 was most likely not in keeping with the committee's emerging long-term vision for the Fairview Historic Homestead. The future plans for the property and the vision that the committee has for its future uses are to be developed at future meetings.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The bid submitted by the first contractor mentioned in the previous post estimated that stabilizing the house will take approx. two (2) months of construction labor at 40 hours/week with labor costs of $11,500. The materials and equipment costs were estimated to be $10,000, for a total estimate of $21,500. The scope of work includes shoring up, chinking and roofing. The other contractor contacted reported he would be unable to start work on the property for at least 1 1/2 months. The committee approved the first contractor's bid and directed that photographs be taken to document the progress of all site work. They also directed that a sign be erected on the site to educate the public re: the restoration effort occurring there.

The committee also discussed what public activities to have at Fairview during Spring and Fall 2010. Activites mentioned for Spring 2010 included live music performances. Activites discussed for Fall 2010 included building a corn maze. The committee voted to begin defining appropriate long-term goals for Fairview at the next meeting.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Garrett Jackson reported that he met with the first local contractor re: the restoration work that needs to be made to the Fairview log house. This contractor provided a written listing of logs which would need to be replaced along with an estimated hourly cost of $35/hour for him and his crew to do the work.  The contractor also indicated that the roof was in fairly good shape, but the house structure needed longer roof overhangs to better protect the logs from the weather. He went on to say that he could utilize logs that are already on the Fairview site or ones to which he has access and also reported that he and his crew could get the house winterized in 2-3 months. The contractor also indicated that the house structure was out of level about 2 1/2" and that he could utilize period windows which he already owns. The committee felt that prompt action needed to be taken and voted to get a written estimate from this contactor and one other.