The Planning Board adopted the Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) for 2014-2021 with a unanimous vote at its Oct. 8 meeting.
Before adopting the CIP, the board amended the document to reflect a decrease in the estimated cost of completing Phase Four of the Rail Trail from $800,000 to $250,000 and to include the plans for a community auditorium in the document’s appendix to address Auditorium Study Committee Chairman Tony DeFrancesco’s concern that the description of the proposed auditorium included in the CIP isn’t accurate.
Member Al Sypek suggested the board re-classify the proposed senior center expansion as a priority one project, noting the two projects designated an urgent priority in the CIP will have no effect on the Town’s tax rate.
Money in the sewer fund will cover the cost of replacing the Plaza 28 pump station and improvements at the Drop-off Center, according to Director of Public Works and Engineering Janusz Czyzowski.
“If I’m a member of the general public, I assume I’ll be voting on things that are a priority one,” Sypek said, noting the senior center improvements are already halfway finished, now that the roof has been repaired and the walls have received a fresh coat of paint. “I would like to see the (senior center expansion) brought up so we don’t have to see it come up in the next 20 years.”
But member Leitha Reilly, who served on the CIP Committee, said the project can’t be classified priority one because the improvements aren’t immediately needed for health or safety reason.
“I don’t want to be the one to say it’s not a priority, because of course it’s a priority. Our seniors are a growing population and there is a need,” Reilly said. “I’m hard-pressed to consider the senior center a priority one for one reason – the definition in this report for a priority one is there is an urgent need for the project with regard to health and safety.”
The senior center expansion project was left a priority level two in the adopted CIP, meaning it should be completed in the next three years to maintain quality of services.
The reason the CIP Committee agreed to re-classify the proposed community auditorium from a priority level three to a priority level two is because completing the project in the next three years is necessary for the town to stay competitive with neighboring schools, towns, and real estate markets that have invested in cutting-edge facilities, Reilly told the board.
In the CIP the Planning Board adopted, the community auditorium is classified a level two priority.
Also included on the 2016-2021 CIP are Sanitary Sewer Extension, South Londonderry Phase II, a level three priority; Sanitary Sewer Replacement on a Section of Mammoth Road, a level two priority; Sanitary Sewer Extension, Mammoth Road North, a level four priority; and Central Fire Station Renovations, a level two priority.
The proposed $3.1 million renovations at Central Station, which was built in the 1970s, include renovating existing apparatus bays and adding two additional bays; and renovating administrative and operations facilities including the communications room, training facility, fitness room, decontamination room, gear storage, restrooms, living space, first floor bunks rooms, office space, secured storage and operations/community training.
The adopted CIP will now move on for consideration by the Town Council and the School Board, whose members will determine which projects to put on the ballot as warrant articles.