The following article is from about 30 years ago, published in the Hartford Courant on August 2nd, 1984. It was written by Martin Kearns. The building is currently an attorney's office. It is adjacent to property that Wesleyan has currently agreed to sell to Centerplan, a development company that has proposed to replace several historic houses with a shopping center.
Wesleyan University, long interested in preserving the architectural beauty of buildings surrounding its campus, last week sold a historic building to have it rehabilitated.
The university sold a three-story, red brick building at 190 Washington St. to Theodore O. Bertz and Judith A. Bertz, both of Durham, July 25. The building, at Washington and High streets, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Wesleyan gave the Bertzes a 10-year mortgage for $122,080.
Theodor O. Bertz, a graphic designer, owns Ted Bertz Design Inc. in Middletown.
As part of the agreement, the Bertzes gave Wesleyan the right of first refusal over any future sale of the property.
In the event that a third party offers to buy the property from the Bertzes, the agreement gives Wesleyan the right “to purchase the premises upon the same terms and for the offered price.”
Bobby Wayne Clark, Wesleyan’s director of public information, said, “The right of first refusal is protective on Wesleyan’s part. We, in effect, retain control (of the property).”
Clark said the Bertzes plan to move Ted Bertz Design Inc. to the building and have agreed to rehabilitate the structure. “It’s going to be an extensive renovation,” he said. He said the Bertzes also plan to rent space in the building.
“In this way our mutual interests are served,” said Clark. The Bertzes will get new office space and the university will have protected the building.
Bertz could not be reached for comment.
The property is adjacent to the northeastern corner of the Wesleyan campus. The sale was the second property transaction this year designed to shield the campus from development.
In February, Wesleyan paid $1 million for a 43 unit apartment building at 254-256 Washington St. to establish a buffer between the campus and the city’s business district and to ensure a stock of apartments for faculty members.
“We are not on a buying spree,” said Clark. “But we are interested in properties adjacent to the campus.”