54-56 Franklin Street

54-56 Franklin Street, Provincetown (2012), by David W. Dunlap. 
54-56 Franklin Street, Provincetown (2008), by David W. Dunlap.Lilac Court Condominium

An eight-unit condominium in two buildings of virtually mirrorlike symmetry, Lilac Court opened in 1986. Sue Harrison, who was on the Planning Board at the time, recalled this overscaled project as an important catalyst in turning public opinion in favor of stricter zoning controls.

“The Planning Board had seen these things coming for a while and tried to get voters to self-limit but they were an independent lot and it was not until they saw Lilac Court that things changed,” Harrison told me in 2012.

“People kept asking, ‘How can they do that?’ And we kept telling them, ‘That’s what the law allows.’ It was really the turning point for the town to understand that it was no longer sufficient to depend on the good sense and good neighbor policy, that money would lead to building choices that most townies didn’t like. Eventually lower building height, less density (units per square foot of space), building scale relative to the neighborhood and a number of other laws passed in response to that project.”

Lilac Court South is the building at No. 54, Lilac Court North is the building at No. 56. As of 2012, five of the original owners remained. They had paid between $112,500 and $190,000 for units that are now assessed at more than a half million dollars.

Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 1 South • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 2 South • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 3 South • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 4 South • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 1 North • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 2 North • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 3 North • Assessor’s Online Database, Unit 4 North ¶ Posted 2012-12-30

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