Moving Day

LEWIS When Kip Thompson moves house, he moves house. Last week Thompson, a resident of 221 Roscoe Road in Lewis, had a century-old barn on his property shifted forty feet. Thompson said moving the barn was the only way to preserve it. The structure was located so close to the road that in the winter, plows clearing the road would push snow right up against the front, causing damage. The barn, constructed some time in the 19th century, is part of a picturesque landscape, backed by Woods Hill and Umbrella Hill. Neighbors made a point of watching as the barn was relocated. Carl and Inge Aiken stood out in the frigid temperatures, to watch the process. Inge Aiken said she thought Thompsons preservation efforts were awesome, since it maintained the sight. Dan Belzer, who has lived in the Roscoe Road area for over 40 years, pulled his truck over to watch the process. He recalled attending a play staged within the barn. Keith Parker of Green Mountain Housemovers of Berlin, Vt., was subcontracted by Jay-Mar Construction to move the barn. Moving buildings, he explained, is a good way to keep the materials from ending up in a local landfill. Its one of the largest recycling businesses in the United States. It serves houses and barns, giving them new life, said Parker. To move the 35 ton barn, four cribs were constructed for the building to rest on. Then the company installed steel bars underneath to support the barn, before sliding it back inch-by-inch. The building also needed to be leveled by about 12 inches. Thompson uses the barn primarily for storage. A new roof with skylights was added in recent years, and he said he might convert it into an art studio for his son.

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