Created on Thursday, 12 July 2007 06:51
Last Updated on Thursday, 12 July 2007 06:51
By Erin Post
The Moretown Select Board plans to look into reconfiguring the town's existing garage site to host a new or renovated facility.
Board members recently discussed drawing up a request for proposals (RFP) to send to area contractors interested in the project.
The goal, said select board member Rae Washburn, would be to determine if a building could be designed at the Route 100B location that is capable of meeting the town's needs.
Discussion over the past several months has revolved around whether a new or remodeled garage at the current location would be able to accommodate trucks and supplies, as well as host a septic system to allow for the installation of a bathroom.
Although some nearby residents have expressed concerns that an expanded facility would be disruptive to the neighborhood and out of character with the village, Washburn said July 2 that a new building roughly the same size as the existing 3,200 square foot facility may be feasible if designed properly.
The layout of the current garage is not space efficient, select board members have said, and prevents some trucks and equipment from being stored inside.
Although the town had considered locating a new garage on property off Route 2 owned by Moretown Landfill Inc. (MLI), the town's road foreman has said the site is too far away from critical town roads to be useful as a main garage site without a satellite facility closer to the village.
The MLI site may be leased for $1 per year as part of an agreement between the town and MLI now up for a second town vote. The agreement would conserve 81 acres of land and allow MLI to meet deeryard mitigation standards as they plan an expansion.
A report from the town garage committee - presented to the select board in June - ranked several potential locations for a new garage. The list included town property off South Hill Road, the current site and the MLI location off Route 2.
The board had considered purchasing land adjacent to the garage, but found the option cost prohibitive.
Select board member Stephanie Venema questioned whether the town owned enough property at the current garage location to accommodate a septic system for bathroom and shower facilities. Although test pits have been dug on land leased to the town where the sand supply is located, Washburn said engineering work is probably necessary to go any further.
Town officials also discussed another option that may address residents' concerns about noise and disruption in the village: Moving the sand pile, now located across Route 100B from the town garage, to another site, possibly the town land off South Hill Road.
Such a move may take care of some concerns about truck activity, select board members said, although they added that more research into the feasibility of the idea is necessary.
"The biggest complaint is dumping and backing up," Washburn said.
Town officials plan to prepare the RFP and discuss it at upcoming select board meetings, said select board chair Paula Mastroberardino.