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February 13, 2014

'Fenimore Lane' announced for unnamed street

For the first time, the lane off Chestnut Street, north of the Inn at Cooperstown has an official name: Fenimore Lane.

The announcement was made before the opening of the TREP$ Marketplace on Jan. 9 at this year’s Cooperstown Winter Carnival.

“It’s an L shaped dead end road,” said Cooperstown Trustee Cindy Falk.

Falk also said that the only structure on Fenimore Lane is a fire hydrant.

The idea to name Fenimore Lane began in 2007, when developer JGB Properties bought property off the road, and expressed an interest in putting a six-house subdivision on it, receiving preliminary approval from the village’s planning board.

The Inn at Cooperstown claimed ownership of the road, however, a claim the village rejected. The subsequent court case concluded in 2012 with a decision that the road was indeed a public road.

After the case was decided, the village’s board of trustees decided to give the road a name.

Falk, an associate professor of material culture at the Cooperstown Graduate Program, researched the history of the road as a member of the village’s historic preservation and architectural review board.

“Property searches are something I do as part of my job,” said Falk, who is a member of the village’s historic preservation and architectural review board. 

Falk said that in old maps, the road really hadn’t had a name, although one had called it Public Way. She said that some older residents have referred to the road as Stagecoach Lane, but the road doesn’t presently connect to Stagecoach Lane.

In December, the board of trustees asked for suggestions for the new street name, and Falk said that they received a few dozen responses. A number of the suggestions were baseball related. Other names were duplications of  already existing village street names. Some of the more colorful suggestions were Leedle Leedle Lane, from the SpongeBob SquarePants television program, and Diagon Alley, from the Harry Potter Books.

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