NORWICH – All indications lead downtown business owners Scott and Anna McLaughlin to believe that there’s old brick under the aluminum siding covering the front of their downtown department store.
Their aim is to uncover it.
The store’s owners plan to take off the 1960s era metal this summer, with assistance from a $200,000 state matching grant program earmarked for facade improvement. McLaughlin said contractors have already been selected for the estimated $400,000 restoration project. Afterward, depending upon its condition, a separate brick renovation project could follow.
Anna McLaughlin said she hopes the move will make the corner of Broad Street and American Avenue more historic and in keeping with the other brick facades already restored downtown.
“I’ve always had an interest in the history of the building,” she said. “Pat Scott (former City of Norwich Historian) gave us a 1930s era photograph that showed it as it was originally when it was Montgomery Ward’s. Scott’s family bought the building back in 1975 when it was already sided. We are excited to see what remains of the original windows and brickwork under there.”