To the editor:
I hope the community has been following the proposed renovations to our new village hall. The coverage in the local papers has been both informative and accurate to date.
The decision to relocate the village office to a more accessible central location was the first step. Combining the village office with our police department, and the reuse of an existing structure is part of an overall plan to consolidate local government resources. This consolidation will generate tremendous cost savings for many years to come.
The movement of our village office is also tied into the redevelopment and improvement of the Fennell street corridor. Our intent is to create a walking village with greater pedestrian safety and convenience. The installation of public restrooms in the new village hall and connections to improved sidewalks and trails are all part of Fennell Street improvements that are proposed.
In the process of reviewing our options for this new village hall facility, the steering committee became aware of a funding opportunity through New York state. The intent of this funding is to provide cost-share funding for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and/or carbon abatement projects. These projects will result in the strategic investments that will build the capacity within the region to participate in the state’s clean energy economy. This investment will help us develop a greater degree of energy independence combined with an increase in environmental stewardship.
Our renovation project comes at a unique time when these new technologies are really beginning to shine. The clean energy technologies are improving rapidly and the payback periods are being reduced significantly. The use of photovoltaic solar panels and a geothermal heating and cooling system are well suited for our facility.
The engineers described our location as “ideal” for solar energy given our flat roof, southern exposure, and lack of shading. If successful we will be the first LEED certified “net zero energy use” municipal facility in New York State.