The Globe Magazine from Sunday features an article about “The March of the McMansions” and naturally Wellesley makes a cameo appearance, as the owner of a Colonial on Tanglewood Road bids neighbors farewell:
“I have no sentimental feeling about it,” says Harold Ottobrini, who lives on Tanglewood Road in Wellesley, which is one street over from a major teardown area. The 82-year-old and his wife, Eleanor, put their nine-room Colonial, which they bought for $42,500 nearly 50 years ago, on the market for $1 million. They’re moving to a condo in Natick. “It wouldn’t bother me at all” if the buyer wanted to tear his house down, says Ottobrini. He admits, however, that in the five decades he and his wife have lived there, he has seen a dramatic change in the feeling of the neighborhood. “It’s not as friendly a town as it used to be,” he says, ever since middle-income families started moving out of their homes, which were replaced by huge residences occupied by wealthy families who largely keep to themselves. “The kids don’t play ball on the streets. Now they go to clubs and all the programs that kids go to today,” Ottobrini says. “There’s more traffic, because the mothers drive their kids around everywhere in those big vans. It’s a colder atmosphere.
“We have no anti-mansion feelings, but we don’t get to meet the people who own these homes, because there’s no mixing. The families don’t get together,” he adds.