NAUGATUCK — The borough closed Thursday on the sale of a classic building that was designed by renowned architect Henry Bacon, who is known to historians nationwide for designing the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Bacon, of New York firm McKim, Mead & White, designed the former Naugatuck Train Station at 195 Water St., which the borough sold to local attorney Carlos Santos and his business partner, restaurateur Jim Perzhilla.
The building has served many purposes over the years — a train station, a historical society museum and the headquarters of the now-defunct Naugatuck Daily News. Now, it will be a casual dining restaurant called “The Station.”
After the project received approvals to change the use of the building and to provide outdoor seating, burgesses agreed this week to hand over the building in exchange for the remaining $240,000. Santos and Perzhilla had already paid $60,000 down and agreed to put more than $500,000 worth of improvements to turn the structure, which has no kitchen, into a restaurant.
The building, which dates to the 1890s, is built in the Spanish Colonial Revival style and featured a red brick roof tiles and stuccoed walls.
Renovations to the building are expected to begin soon and will occur while liquor permits are pending. Santos and Perzhilla plan to be open by late summer. They say they look forward to a restaurant that Naugatuck can be proud to call its own.
The restaurant will have seating for 288 people, including 68 on the patio and 10 at the bar. The owners do not plan to change the historic nature of the building.
Naugatuck Economic Development Director Ron Pugliese notes that this is the first time the building has been on the tax rolls in 20 years. He has said he is confident that the iconic building will be transformed into a successful and well-received restaurant.