The newly named Preble Street Common in Gorham Village. Robert Lowell / American Journal

Long tagged with the generic moniker “the green,” the town-owned open space in Gorham Village is now officially “Preble Street Common.”

The Town Council unanimously approved the name Tuesday.

Councilor Virginia Wilder Cross, the council member of a citizen group that proposed the name, said it was one of eight or 10 options considered, including The Village Green, Gorham Village Green, The Village Square and Preble Street Park.

At the corner of Preble and South streets, the area has often been referred to as “the green space next to Robie Gym,” but Wilder Cross said some residents have confused it with Robie Park near the high school.

“We believe now people will find it,” Wilder Cross said.

Preble Street Common is at the head of the South Street Historic District with period homes, Baxter Memorial Library and Baxter Museum and has picnic tables and benches to accommodate those who choose to eat their takeout food from nearby restaurants and shops. The community message board is at the site. Civic and school groups use the space for outdoor functions, such as art shows and Christmas tree sales.

After high school let out Tuesday, brothers Hunter Clark-Young, a high school junior, and Matthew Clark-Young, a freshman, stopped by the common.

“It’s a nice place to hang out,” Matthew Clark-Young said.

The new name doesn’t lock the fast-growing town into it the site’s current use,  however, according to Councilor Benjamin Hartwell.

“I don’t want to rule out using it for another purpose in the future,” he said.

The space was the site of an early high school constructed in 1868. It closed in 1939 giving way to a replacement high school that was later converted into the municipal center. The old wooden, high school was demolished in the 1970s.

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