By Bill Parry
Attorney Karl McNamara has purchased the historic Steinway Mansion from Philip Loria for an undisclosed sum and he plans to restore it and open a music school.
Preservationists had been alarmed since the spring when construction began on 11 warehouses on the property. While the 27-room home, built by the legendary piano-making Steinway family in 1858, was landmarked, the land was not and Loria was free to excavate the hill on which it sits.
In a mission statement, made available by the Friends of Steinway Mansion, McNamara writes, “The Steinway Conservatory is dedicated to providing a tuition-free, world class musical education for all gifted individuals who come from low-income or disadvantaged backgrounds.”
Bob Singleton, the executive director of the Greater Astoria Historical Society, who runs the Friends of Steinway Mansion, was greatly relieved.
“We are pleased to see our vision for the mansion is shared by the broader world, as exemplified by this person’s vision,” Singleton said.
McNamara, and his team will share more details on the sale of the Steinway Mansion and its future as the Steinway Conservancy at a public meeting on Mon., Sept. 21.
The meeting will take place at the Greater Astoria Historical Society, at 35-20 Broadway, beginning at 7 p.m. It is open to the public.
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr