Council approves bedrooms for Pavilion

Fri, 12/29/2017 - 9:00am

The New Shoreham Town Council voted unanimously at its most recent meeting to officially add two rental units to the project: one a single occupancy unit and the other to accommodate two people. The single unit will be installed in the south end of the pavilion, while the two-bed unit will be constructed in the north end. First Warden Ken Lacoste made the motion, which was seconded by Councilor Sven Risom. 

In granting its approval, the Town Council approved the allocation of $21,046.58 from a contingency fund to finance the construction of the units. By approving the project’s change order, the Town Council addresses the island’s need for more rental housing, something it has made a priority. 

The town has $940,000 available to fund the renovation project, with $140,000 in a contingency fund. Lincoln-based Mill City Construction, who bid $843,585 on the project, began renovating the building at the end of October, and was expected to complete the project in late April. However, per a Dec. 12 letter from Mill City to Northeast Collaborative Architects, the project’s architect, “the change order will add 15 working days to the contract time schedule.” 

During the meeting, Lacoste pointed out that the New Shoreham Comprehensive Plan notes that the town should “use existing town-owned buildings” for bolstering its rental housing needs. The Beach Pavilion is a town-owned building.

“This is the first change order,” said Facilities Manager Sam Bird, who has been overseeing the project. “My recommendation to you would be to approve the addition of the bedroom units for much-needed seasonal housing. This is an opportunity. They will be rental units.”

Finance Director Amy Land said the construction cost of the units will be paid off in about five and a half years.

Bird said that since construction on the project was proceeding he needed an answer from the Town Council to inform the contractor of the change order.

“I can’t say no to this since I’m the one who brought it up,” said Councilor Chris Willi. 

Lacoste asked Recreation Director Dave Sniffen if the building would be of use to him for housing seasonal summer staff. In response, Sniffen said that he could house three lifeguards in the building during the summer season.

“What about constraints to prevent mischief on the property?” asked Lacoste of Sniffen.

“If we get the right people in there it shouldn’t be a problem,” said Sniffen.

“I think we should move ahead with this,” said Risom, who pointed out an issue with where the bathrooms were located. Under the current plans, renters of the units would have to go outside to have access to the bathrooms. There were some brief remarks about addressing the issue, but no change to the design was made.

Building Official Marc Tillson signed off on the rental units. “The rooms are designed to meet the building code,” he said. “The septic system is large, and the addition of three occupants won’t overwhelm the system. And the Recreation Director, and the Facilities Manager, are in favor of the project.”

The Town Council meets next on Jan. 10 at 4 p.m. at Town Hall.