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N.J. Town to Save 200-Year-Old Masonic Lodge with Resident’s $1M Donation

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A historic Masonic Lodge nearing its 200th anniversary in Madison, New Jersey, has been saved from sale and possible demolition thanks to a generous donation of $1 million from a local resident.

The Madison Borough Council approved a measure to allocate $125,000 from its Open Space Recreation & Historic Preservation Trust Fund, which when combined with the $1 million donation from Martin Heller, a longstanding developer in the area, allowed the borough to purchase the Masonic Lodge for a total of $1,125,000​.

The initiative was well-received, marking a significant community effort to preserve and repurpose a valued historical landmark.

Martin Heller, of the Heller Group on Main Street, pledged this significant donation to aid in the purchase of the historic Madison Masonic Lodge building​​. This donation enables Madison to acquire the structure from Masonic Lodge 93, with plans to renovate the building for community use.

The renovated space is projected to serve as a senior center among other purposes, enhancing the borough’s social infrastructure and preserving a piece of its rich historical tapestry​3.

Previously, the trustees of the Madison Masonic Lodge had sought to sell the nearly 200-year-old building on Main Street, making this acquisition a timely intervention to secure and repurpose the historic property for community benefit​4.

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