May 22, 2009 Ami Olson Uncategorized
The latest town hall proposal was defeated more than two months ago, but the Marcellus Town Board is far from done solving the myriad problems with the current facility.
The board voted 3-2 last Monday to allow VIP Structures to begin studying the first-priority fixes at town hall.
The lack of a second-floor emergency exit suitable to the NYS Dept. of Labor regulations and upgrades to three entrance ways and one doorway inside the building are of top concern, while the overall flow of traffic and other design and accommodation issues were prioritized with less urgency.
In the meantime, the town is still on the fence with the village’s offer to renovate the old library building on Slocombe Avenue into a “new” town hall.
In a letter dated April 23, Town Supervisor Dan Ross formally turned down the village’s offer, citing numerous reasons the library would be unfit as a town hall, regardless of renovation.
Ross pointed to a lack of square footage, parking, handicapped accessibility and air conditioning, an aging heating system and roof and design problems as some of the town’s reasons for declining the village’s offer.
In his letter Ross stated the board had based it’s decision on the conceptual drawings by Lake Architecture. The board has in the past slammed the design firm for basing those plans on specs for the proposed town hall design that failed to gain voter approval in March, without consulting the town.
During a meeting of town and village officials in April, Mayor Mike Plochocki had reminded the town board that the Lake Architectural designs had been commissioned by the village for the sole purpose of determining whether or not the town’s needs could be met with the space available in the former library building.
But on Monday May 11, Marcellus town justices and officials took a walk through the building to see whether it might be suitable for the court department.
Ross said Thursday the former library could potentially meet the town’s needs for a shared meeting room and offices.
“We’ve always had it on the table, we’re just trying to sort out as priority one items for the current building,” Ross said.
Utilizing the first floor of the old library would allow the town a meeting room to serve as a town board, planning board and court room, and open up more space in the current town hall to move offices from the second floor downstairs to the first floor.
In the meantime, the town will continue to focus primarily on solving existing issues in the building it already has, Ross said.aq