"We are taxpayers. We have tried to come up with the most cost-effective plan that we can.”
TOWN HALL PLANS
Bill Johnston of the Town Hall Committee spoke of the renovation of the 100-year-old structure.
“We plan to keep the Town Hall in the village, as that’s what the people seem to want. It’s an important way Westport presents itself.”
Plans would deal with energy efficiency, handicap accessibility and wear and tear.
“The building is basically sound but very energy inefficient,” Johnston said.
Improvements would include adding a cement slab on the bottom level, two interior staircases and moving the offices to street level.
An estimated cost of $1.4 million would be partially covered by grants, such as those for historic preservation that would bring state reimbursement of $3 for every dollar spent.
Solar energy could also be an option.
Peter Gibbs of Creative Engineering Ventures of Burlington has been involved in assessing the 7-acre site where the DPW shed is located now and the proposed DPW/fire station site.
While the location has municipal water, it does not have town sewage, and the 4,000 feet of piping to accomplish that is probably cost prohibitive, he said.
He pointed out that stormwater drainage issues exist and that the ledge outcropping would limit usable acreage on the land.
“The site costs are high relative to building costs,” said Gibbs, who estimated there may be as much as 2,000 square yards of ledge removal.
Murray presented the latest plans for the 16,400-square-foot pre-engineered metal structure, which would include six DPW truck bays and seven emergency-vehicle bays.
It would have shared decontamination and laundry facilities, as well as a training room. Due to the pitched roof in the center, there would be space to practice rope rescues and similar exercises.