Cable Av­enue of­fi­cially des­ig­nated

His­toric street in Bay Roberts now a mu­nic­i­pal her­itage district

The Compass - - EDITORIAL OPINION - BY TERRY ROBERTS

The Town of Bay Roberts has of­fi­cially des­ig­nated Cable Av­enue as a mu­nic­i­pal her­itage district, a dis­tinc­tion the town and the her­itage ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee hopes will en­sure its unique his­toric, aes­thetic and cul­tural value will be pre­served and pro­tected for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

The town coun­cil unan­i­mously ap­proved the des­ig­na­tion dur­ing a re­cent meet­ing, with deputy mayor Philip Wood cred­it­ing Mar­i­lyn Dawe, who chair’s the ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee, for lead­ing the ef­fort. “ She did a fan­tas­tic job,” Wood stated. Wood noted that res­i­dents of the street were also “ very en­thu­si­as­tic” about the des­ig­na­tion, and ea­gerly took part in all the dis­cus­sions.

There’s al­ready talk about stag­ing a cel­e­bra­tion in 2013, which will mark the 100th an­niver­sary of the street.

Cable Av­enue has great sig­nif­i­cance in the his­tory of the town, since the large, two-storey homes there were built in 1913 to ac­com­mo­date those em­ployed at the nearby West­ern Union Cable Sta­tion build­ing.

The Cable Sta­tion has been des­ig­nated a na­tional his­toric site, and is a pro­vin­cial reg­is­tered his­toric struc­ture. It was con­structed by the West­ern Union Cable Com­pany in 1913, and was re­stored by the Bay Roberts Her­itage So­ci­ety. It houses the Road to Yes­ter­day Mu­seum, the Christo­pher Pratt Art Gallery, the Bay Roberts Ar­chives, and the Bay Roberts mu­nic­i­pal of­fices and coun­cil cham­bers.

The town is plan­ning some up­grades to the street, and there are dis­cus­sions un­der­way to amend the town’s plan­ning and de­vel­op­ment reg­u­la­tions to en­sure the street is pro­tected and pre­served.

Ac­cord­ing to the state­ment of sig­nif­i­cance pre­sented to coun­cil, the staff du­plexes on the up­per por­tion of Cable Av­enue were built in the Dutch Colo­nial Re­vival style, while some oth­ers are more ver­nac­u­lar in de­sign and fea­ture low-pitch gam­brel roofs. Other de­sign fea­tures which make the district unique in­clude the set­back side­walks, curbs and the uni­form set­back and spac­ing of houses.

Cable Av­enue is said to have “cul­tural value” as a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the eco­nomic and so­cial in­flu­ence West­ern Union Cable Com­pany had in Bay Roberts.

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