Thursday, April 17, 2014
WINSLOW -- After lying dormant for more than nine weeks, the site of a new police station sprang to life this week.
Rick Labbe Construction workers spread gravel for a foundation base outside the Winslow Police department renovation project on Tuesday.
Staff photo by David Leaming
Several construction workers resumed the project Tuesday after Town Manager Michael Heavener signed a building permit for the project late last week.
Then on Tuesday night, the Town Council voted unanimously to borrow an additional $97,000, in a second reading. The council didn't vote on a proposed fireworks ordinance, which has been tabled since August.
The construction project eventually will cost the town more than $734,000 -- the new estimate is $106,000 more than originally planned, but less than reported last week. Part of the borrowed amount -- $1,000 -- is set aside for any contingencies that may arise.
The police station is attached to the Town Office and the fire station -- all of which must include a fire-suppression system and upgrades to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
During a special meeting last week, Code Enforcement Officer Frank Stankevitz questioned whether the roof over the fire station can support the additional weight of the sprinkler system, which will add up to 5 pounds per square foot to the roof -- a significant load. Heavener said Tuesday a structural engineer had performed an initial inspection of the roof and, although his findings aren't final, he believes the main distribution pipe can be affixed to a cinder-block wall, which would reduce the overall load on the roof.
Next, Chairman Gerald Saint Amand asked the council whether it would consider adding a resident to a recently formed committee to oversee the project. A week earlier, the council had appointed Heavener, Stankevitz, the public works director and the police chief to the committee. Since then, Amand said he has been approached by several residents asking for an independent voice on the committee. Councilors Steve Russell and Ken Flethcher said it was a good idea.
"I have no problem with adding a citizen to the committee," Russell said. "We've had them before and it always worked out good."
The council voted to give Amand the authority to choose the committee member from a list of qualified candidates. Amand asked anyone who is interested to contact the Town Office.
Construction of the police station foundation began in mid-July, but a few weeks later the state issued stop-work orders because Peachey Builders hadn't applied for a building permit from the fire marshal. The site had been idle ever since. Two weeks ago, the fire marshal issued a permit that required the town to include code updates. The cost to the town could have been higher, but Peachey Builders agreed to absorb about $60,000 in code upgrades.
The town has the option to defer some of the upgrades over the next two years, but most will be done when the project restarts. A requirement to create a handicapped-accessible entrance to the Town Office -- estimated at $10,000 -- will be done at a later date.
The Town Council had originally agreed to $638,000 for the project.
Peachey Builders has agreed to a completion date of Jan. 14. If the work isn't finished by then, the town will charge the company $1,000 for every additional day.
Ben McCanna -- 861-9239