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editorial

Failure to preserve JP home shows cracks in landmarks law

In a city that preserves the houses of famous men from James Michael Curley to Malcolm X, the unassuming home of trailblazing female doctor Marie Elizabeth Zakrzewska might have deserved some protection too. Unfortunately, historical-preservation advocates never even had a chance to make the case: The Victorian-era house in Jamaica Plain was gutted recently without the review by the city’s Landmarks Commission that’s legally required before demolishing older buildings in the city.

The property owner filed an application claiming the changes would only amount to an alteration, rather than a demolition, exploiting a loophole to avoid a preservation hearing — even though only a small section of the house now remains standing.

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