I received the following question from a reader and response from Town Administrator Fred Turkington:

Question:
Is there somewhere on your website that I can find out what is happening with projects in Cochituate Village? For example, Grape Ideas closed down, and is now adding onto the back of their former building. There are no construction signs on the property that tell what the project is, nor can I find any information through a search on Waylandenews.com.

Also, what is going on with the old Finnerty's Restaurant, now becoming even more rundown and unkempt. Can Waylandenews.com provide an update on both properties?

Answer from me for WaylandeNews:
I encourage residents to post questions like these on the Discussion Forum where you will generally get an answer from someone who knows.

These questions are generally only "answered" on the main website if there has been a news article on the topic.

Answer from Fred Turkington:

I know of no website, but would be happy to speak with any resident to share what we know about projects based on inquiries and permit applications at our land use departments. Sarkis Sarkisian, our new town planner, and Dan Bennett, building commissioner, are the two best sources on my staff. Residents can contact them by email at ssarkisian@wayland.ma.us or dbennett@wayland.ma.us.

As to the specific questions, the owners of the building that formerly housed Grape Ideas received approval a couple of years ago to renovate and add on to that building. The owners have approached the selectmen about obtaining a beer and wine retail license for the property. I am not sure whether they intend to occupy the entire ground floor or lease a portion to another retail tenant. The upstairs will be apartments. In the interim, Grape Ideas will appear before the selectmen in the next month to seek permission to transfer the liquor license they hold to another location on Commonwealth Road (near Mel's).

Also, the selectmen will be holding a license hearing within a month for the folks bringing a Mexican restaurant to the location formerly occupied by Morn's Thai Restaurant.

The owner of Finnerty's has actively tried to interest others to open a restaurant at that location. The owners of 28 Degrees in Boston's South End had plans to open another restaurant there in August 2008, but the energing economic downturn had dissuaded private investors on which they were relying for financing the project. At various times since closing, the site has been placed with brokers specializing in restaurant use. Given that restaurants are among the most risky business investments under any scenario, the current economy and lending environment poses an enormous challenge. I will ask staff to reach out to the owners and encourage a better effort to manage the property.