WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield business owner and resident Greg Blasi of Vincentsen Blasi Architecture will host his second architectural history tour in town in alignment with the Westfield Historical Society this Saturday, July 28, at 9 a.m. For his second tour, Blasi will walk through the Stoneleigh Park neighborhood to highlight its architecture, building methods and materials.
“The reason why I am doing the walking tours is basically to get people to fall back in love with their town's legacy of beautiful existing homes,” Blasi said. “I am showing them what these houses look like through my eyes — change in heights, roof profiles, materials, even window patterns.”
Blasi has his own firm in Westfield and has lived in the town for 17 years. After having lived in other New Jersey towns, Blasi said that he fell in love with Westfield because of the diverse architecture of the town.
“I couldn’t believe how many different styles of home you have in one block,” he said.
The tour will focus mostly on the architecture of the homes with a focus on why early 20th Century/pre-World War II homes were built in certain ways and in certain locations. He also plans to discuss the cost of construction and the materials used which, according to Blasi, is the main difference between a well-made home and some of the recent builds in the area.
“There is nothing wrong with having new homes that are designed well,” he said. “The difference really is scale, proportions, materials and the details — that’s what makes a home great in my eyes. We don’t need to make this town a museum, but you can tell there is frustration over materials and sameness.”
If you are interested in joining this Saturday’s tour, a reservation must be made by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. A recommended donation of $5 is asked of Historical Society members and a recommended donation of $10 is requested for non-members.
Tours are capped at about 20 people, said Blasi, but additional tours may be added pending interest.