by Margo Callaghan
According to Viet Nam veteran Mike Lynch of Shelburne, it was an anonymous donation by a townsperson that began the planning process for a Veteran’s monument in town. When Town Clerk Colleen Haag found out about the funding in April of last year, she contacted Lynch as well as veteran Bud Ockert to help organize a committee that would shape the vision for the tribute to the men and women of Shelburne who have served in wars of the 20th and 21st centuries.
Once word spread, other veterans came forward: Lynch, Ockert, and Haag were joined by Paul Goodrich, Sam Feitelberg, and Don Condon who volunteered to assist, along with other townspeople. The group went before the Selectboard in October. “We wanted to be proactive,” Haag explained, keeping the various governing arms of the town in the loop regarding the planned monument. As the committee began zeroing in on the Parade in the Village as a proposed location, Town Planning and Zoning Director Dean Pierce offered that the Town’s master plan for the Parade was in need of updating, having last been so in 1995. The new plan would offer the structure by which the Historic Preservation and Design Review Commission (HPDRC) would review the project. When the RFP was sent out to bid, the project was clearly positioned as the driver behind the plan update, according to Pierce. “The consultants knew this [Veteran’s monument] was not an add-on component, but would need to be addressed square on.” Boyle Associates came before the Selectboard last month with three concepts for the Parade, in addition to proposals for the Village Green in front of what is now Jamie Two Coats toy shop.
Pierce’s office is currently conducting an online survey in order to gather opinions of the overall look of those public areas, based on Boyle’s concepts. The goal, according to Pierce, is that feedback will be gathered from interested residents regarding the future design of these areas.
“We have a lot of support in town for the project,“ Lynch shared, including monetary support from additional individuals. The committee will set itself on course for additional fundraising efforts in hopes of completing the project next summer.
But the final design the monument takes has yet to be determined. “It should be something that could be used,” Lynch stated, indicating perhaps benches would fulfill a need in the area of the Parade. That idea was borrowed from a design in the small town of Hamilton, NY which Ockert offered up as a concept for Shelburne to investigate. “This will be well thought out – we aren’t looking for anything huge. It will fit with the space,” Lynch concluded.
If you haven’t already done so, Pierce is urging interested individuals to complete the online survey for the Village Green and Parade Master Plan. To do so, go to https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dDQ2NlVGcGlpVDFOeXN2U1ZERFBWdUE6MA
The deadline for completing the survey is Aug. 14.