Fairmount Presbyterian Church to hold public meeting on future plans for former manse
Fairmount Presbyterian Church will hold a public meeting on the future of its former manse on Tuesday, May 7, at 7:30 p.m. The meeting will be held in the church’s chapel at 2757 Fairmount Blvd.
The church had used the house at 2765 Fairmount Blvd. as the manse for its head pastor from 1968 to 2011. The almost 9,000-square-foot structure was designed by Meade and Hamilton, a prominent Cleveland architectural firm, in 1912 as a single-family residence. The building has not been significantly altered since it was built; however, the church currently uses a portion of the backyard for parking.
With the departure of former pastor Louise Westfall in 2011, the church decided it no longer needed the structure for use as a manse, but did not determine what other purpose it should serve. In January, the church convened a task force to take a fresh look at the property and recommend the best course of action for the congregation. The task force will convene a meeting on the topic for the congregation at 9:45 a.m. on Sunday, May 5.
“These are listening sessions,” said Lee Chilcote, a task force member. “We are not making any decisions at these meetings.” The task force will make a recommendation to the Session, the church’s governing body, which will then make a decision.
The church has published a task force report and a summary of a summary of the pros and cons of various options on its website, www.fairmountchurch.org/news.asp. Options include keeping and repurposing the property; selling the manse, minus adjoining portions of the lot; mothballing the property for future use; relocating the manse; and keeping the property and removing the building.
Deanna Bremer Fisher
Deanna Bremer Fisher is executive director of FutureHeights and publisher of the Heights Observer.