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Maysonnave Cottage gets new life

The Maysonnave Cottage, a building once scheduled for demolition, will get new life thanks to the Sonoma City Council and a room full of supporters.

On a unanimous vote Monday, the council agreed to direct staff to prepare a document that will lease the building to Sid Hoover, local architect, and Benchmark Contractors, on condition that the historic cottage be restored and functional.

“The process works,” said Councilmember David Cook. “I did not want to tear down the cottage and I did not want it moved.”

The proposal from Benchmark/Hoover calls for a 20-year lease of the property with an allowance for the cottage to be used as a vacation rental. In exchange, the building will be restored to residential occupancy standards. At the conclusion of the lease, the city will take it back and can then decide to bring it up to public occupancy standards.

“This is a win-win situation both for the League and Sonoma,” said Robert Demler, vice president of the Sonoma League for Historic Preservation. The league leases the historic Maysonnave House and Gardens next door.

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