North House Listening Sessions ScheduledApr 19, 2022 10:31AM ● By Editor
After the Planning and Zoning Commission denied North House Folk School’s variance request at their April 6 meeting, North House decided to withdraw its request. North House has taken the community questions and concerns seriously. “North House is listening to the community and has withdrawn our request for a variance so that we can have more conversations,” said Wright. “We don’t know how long this process will take, but we’re committed to taking the time to address questions and concerns about the proposal.”
For the next three weeks, listening sessions are scheduled Tuesdays April 19, 26, and May 3rd from 9-10am and Thursdays April 21, 28th, and May 5th from 7-8pm. These meetings will be on the North House Campus in the Green Building at 501 W. Highway 61, and anyone is welcome to attend. North House also welcomes phone calls from anyone that cannot attend one of the sessions at 218-387-9762.
North House Folk School was recently working with the Grand Marais City Council on a building project on the Grand Marais Harbor. At the April 6 Planning and Zoning Commission meeting, North House shared it's plans for what they call the "Dockside parcel." That property, purchased by North House in 2018, includes the Dockside building—where Fisherman's Daughter operates and North Superior Fishery process their daily catch, the pole building that North House calls the Boat Barn, the historic Scott Fish House which is currently used by north house for storage, and a small shed that the fishermen use for net storage and other items related to their operations. North House was present at the meeting seeking approval for a variance related to a new classroom building on this site.
In the days preceding the meeting, word spread in the community that the Scott Fish House, a building on the Historic Registry, was going to be demolished. “North House never planned to tear down the fish house. Indeed, we have hired experts to complete a Historic Structures Report so we can fully understand the building’s condition,” said Executive Director, Greg Wright. “Relocating the building in partnership with the Cook County Historical Society so that it could become a more readily enjoyed interpretive site seemed the most prudent way to serve the needs of North House and our neighbors at North Superior Fishery, Angry Trout, and Fisherman’s Daughter,” added Tom Morse, North House’s Development Director. However, conversations at the Planning and Zoning Commission meeting raised community concerns about the Scott Fish House, the future of the commercial fishing operation that rents dock and building space from North House, and the overall scope and impact of the building project; inspiring North House to pause their plans to listen to the community and answer questions.