Charles E. Janson



  • Overview


    Charles Janson has nearly four decades of experience assisting public, private, and non-profit organizations with their development goals. He focuses his practice on common interest community law, real estate transactions and financing, and title work. Charlie also handles land use restrictions and opportunities adjacent to historic sites. He is a member of the firm’s Real Estate + Development Group.

    Condominiums and Common Interest Communities

    Charlie handles all legal work for the planning, formation, and incorporation of common interest communities, including residential and mixed use developments. He represents developers, condominium associations, and commercial and residential sellers and purchasers of units. He has handled agreements for several condominium complexes, including a mixed use development that included seven luxury residential units and two shops in a downtown location. Charllie also assists with financing matters related to common interest complexes. He has reviewed financing for condominiums around the country, to help ensure all parties, including owners and lenders, are protected.

    Real Estate - Transactions and Financing

    Charlie’s practice encompasses commercial real estate purchases, sales, and leasing. He has provided representation for complex residential real estate transactions, and guidance on title issues, structured unique lender construction loan arrangements, and land use and environmental solutions. His practice also has included affordable housing development, and many types of real-estate secured commercial financing. Charlie has coordinated environmental remediation and has advised trust departments and commercial lenders on environmental policies for real property assets. He has experience handling conservation easements, and property acquisition and disposition on behalf of land trusts. He represents a range of clients, including private developers, government agencies, municipalities, museums, condominium entities, and non-profit organizations.

    Charlie often handles complex or unique real estate transactions, involving multi-million dollar properties. He helped a site owner declare a two-unit condominium to sell off as a unit a boutique hotel facility while retaining as a unit the principal economic asset, a higher than-30 story office tower. He assisted another client with acquiring and preserving property neighboring a museum site, ensuring the perpetual preservation of scenic views for the unique former home and adjoining grounds of an internationally acclaimed modernist architect.

    Title Work

    Charlie assists clients through resolution and analysis of title insurance for property matters including myriad use easements and preservation issues. He handles complicated title issues, such as hurdles associated with unattended or forgotten private roads.

    Pro Bono

    Charlie has worked on a pro bono basis for more than 22 years for the Weir Farm National Historic Site in Wilton, Connecticut, a national park dedicated to preserving and interpreting the life of the American painter, Julian Alden Weir. Charlie has provided a range of legal services, including working on a cooperative agreement between the National Park Service and its private partner, the Weir Farm Art Center, assisting with the visiting artists’ studio, which is run jointly in a public/private partnership, and helping to secure and continue preservation of more than 100 acres of deaccessioned Nature Conservancy lands adjoining the historic site.  

  • Experience
    • Experience


      • Obtained the land use approvals for a community health care center and non-profit healthcare facility in a major Fairfield County, Connecticut municipality, intended to provide neighborhood health services.

      • Worked with the Dahesh Museum of Art and its Trustees for over 20 years as an attorney, directly involved with exhibitions, educational and development programs. Served on the museum’s architectural planning and construction team to renovate the museum’s Manhattan space, coordinating owner, construction manager, architect, and cost estimator to design and build galleries, support infrastructure, a museum shop, and a restaurant.

      • Represented the non-profit organization, SoundWaters, which operates a schooner on Long Island Sound as a floating classroom, in negotiating a long-term lease for an unused building in Stamford Cove Island Park, the 18th century Holly Mansion, now restored and renovated as an environmental community center and organization headquarters.

      • Assisted a non-profit developer of nearly 300 affordable home ownership opportunities in Fairfield County, including Stamford, Westport, Darien, Wilton and Bridgeport. Established condominium single-family homeownership opportunities on fee and leasehold properties. Developed purchase options and covenants which have served as models, to keep units affordable forever. 

      • Assisted the National Trust for Historic Preservation with securing real property tax exemptions for Philip Johnson’s Glass House in New Canaan, and represented NTHP in its land acquisition and establishment of a preservation and conservation easement ultimately protecting important adjoining property and views. Successfully assisted museum client with obtaining special permit from the New Canaan Planning Commission. 

      • Served as real estate counsel for a revenue bond issue by a major municipal Housing Authority in Connecticut and handled the related ground lease, for the renovation and rehabilitation of a 430 unit rental apartment complex.

    • Professional Associations

      Professional Associations

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Former Chair of Committee on Affordable Housing and Homelessness
      Environmental Law Section, Executive Committee

      American Bar Association

      Fairfield County Bar Association
      Co-chair of Environmental Committee (1996 - 1998)

      Greenwich Bar Association
      Real Property Contract Committee, 1987-1988 and 1990-1991

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Planning & Zoning Section, Executive Committee (1988 - 1989)

      Connecticut Bar Foundation
      James W. Cooper Fellow (2011)

      Real Estate Finance Association

      Connecticut Community Association Institute

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Real Property Section Executive Committee
    • Honors + Awards

      Honors + Awards

      Certificate of Honor from National Park Service and Weir Farm Art Center, July 2010, for 12 years of pro-bono services to their public/private partnership including the Artist in Residence Studio

      Certificate of Appreciation from The Volunteer Center of Southwestern Fairfield County on May 8, 2007, for service as a Trustee of the Darien Land Trust since April 2004

      Robinson+Cole Pro Bono Service Award Recipient, 2021

    • Community Involvement

      Community Involvement

      Preservation Connecticut
      Advisory Board (2021)

      Museum Trustee Association

      National Trust for Historic Preservation
      Board of Advisors

      The Landmark Trust USA
      Trustee, Property Committee (2020)

      Roton Point Association
      Past Commodore (2021)
      Honorary Regatta Chair, 61st Annual Multihull Regatta (2021)
      Sailing Commodore (2013 - 2021)
      Vice President (2008 - present)
      Director (2005 - present)

      Darien Land Trust
      Chair, Governance, LTA Accreditation Committee (2010 - present)
      Trustee (2004 - present)

      Dahesh Museum of Art
      Trustee (2002 - present)

      Weir Farm Art Center
      Artist in Residence Committee (2021)
      Trustee (2000 - present)

      Weir Farm Heritage Trust, now Weir Farm Art Center
      Council of Overseers (1995 - 1999)

      Fairfield 2000 Homes Corporation
      Director (1988 - 1998)

      Stamford Waterside Development Corporation
      Director (1989 - 1995)

      Connecticut Preservation Action
      Director: 1982-1988, 1993-1994, 2020
    • Presentations


      "Let’s Hear from the Developers," presented by Darien Talks Housing, The Regional Plan Association and The Fairfield County Center for Housing Opportunity (10/7/2021)
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      "Clean Energy for Your Clients: Tax Assessment Financing on Commercial Buildings with C-PACE," a Connecticut Bar Association CLE webinar. (6/3/2020)
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      "Landscape and Structure Preservation," co-presented with Anne F. Campbell, at the American Planning Association National Planning Conference, Planning in Motion, held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City (5/9/2017)
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      "Hot Topics in Local Historic Preservation Law," co-presented with Sara C. Bronin, professor at the University of Connecticut School of Law and coauthor of Historic Preservation Law (2013) and Historic Preservation Law in a Nutshell (2014), webinar (10/19/2015)
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      "Jetties, Docks, Seawalls, Littoral Rights, Waterfront Homes, Spartina, and More," at Robinson & Cole's Coastal Considerations and Regulatory Reality Breakfast Seminar (7/14/2009)

    • News

      R+C in the News

      • March 29, 2024

        Charles Janson Honored with Audrey Beck Award for Historic Preservation Advocacy

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      • July 30, 2021

        Robinson+Cole Presents Annual Awards for Outstanding Contributions

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      • April 20, 2021

        Charlie Janson’s Pro Bono Work Helps Bring Affordable Homeownership Housing to the South End of Stamford

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      • March 28, 2018

        Robinson+Cole Supports 2018 UConn MBA Sustainability Case Competition

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      • May 31, 2017

        Real Estate + Development Group Presents at APA 2017 National Planning Conference

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      • November 2, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Participate in IMLA Webinar

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      • February 3, 2015

        Charlie Janson Speaks at Celebration Marking Dahesh Museum's 20th Anniversary and New Location on Upper East Side

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      • August 14, 2014

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Host Networking Event at 2014 ABA Annual Meeting

      • April 23, 2013

        Stamford Lawyers Elected as Fellows of the American Bar Foundation

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      • June 14, 2012

        LandLaw Lawyers Honor the Passing of Mentor Terry Tondro

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      • April 17, 2012

        Charles Janson Appointed to National Trust for Historic Preservation Board of Advisors

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      • June 29, 2011

        Three Robinson & Cole Attorneys Elected James W. Cooper Fellows

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      • September 28, 2010

        Robinson & Cole Attorneys Deliver Presentation on Insurance Impacts of New Condominium Legislation

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      • July 15, 2010

        Weir Farm Art Center and National Park Service Honor Charles Janson

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      • August 7, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Receives Silver CQIA Innovation Prize for SMaRT Program

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      • April 24, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Counsel Joins Connecticut Trust's Board of Trustees

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      R+C News Releases

      • May 18, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Team Involved in “Office Deal of the Year”

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      • October 25, 2010

        Robinson & Cole Real Estate Attorney Appointed to National Trust for Historic Preservation Board of Advisors

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