Recreation & COA
On Tuesday, December 12, Abacus, the architect for the two buildings presented the preliminary designs and costs to the Capital Facilities Committee. Many of the members from the Recreation Commission and COA Board of Directors were in attendance for the presentation. Feedback seemed generally positive. Abacus will attempt to incorporate these comments into their designs and come back before CFC sometime in February.
The estimates have been completed by Abacus. Left Field is currently working through reconciliation but they seem to be both around $20,000,000. Preliminary designs and cost will be presented to the Capital Facilities Committee and the Select Board for next steps sometime in November. However, it should be noted if the Town Center does get reversed by the electorate the costs for the COA are no longer valid since the current COA Programming would need to be temporarily relocated during construction.
The Town received the preliminary results from the geotechnical investigations at the site which indicate some bedrock as well as large boulders that may need to be treated as bedrock. The Town will be meeting with the neighbors in the coming weeks to update them on the progress and recommendations for River Street Extension and old Middlesex Road.
Due diligence is currently being performed by the architect including layout options and design renderings. Once these are completed the project will be sent to an estimator for cost projections. This is expected to be completed in October and to be presented to the Select Board at their first meeting in November. If approved by the Select Board the project will go for funding at the Spring 2024 Town Meeting.
The Capital Facilities Committee has voted to raze and rebuild the Council on Aging on the current site and to place a Recreation Center at the tennis courts at PHR. Abacus will begin the process of cost estimating before it is brough to the Select Board for a final recommendation.
On March 28th the Capital Facilities Committee held a meeting to discuss the future of the Recreation Center/ Council on Aging. Abacus, the architects for the project gave a presentation to the committee that reviewed the location options and layout. The meeting was well attended, and the community was given the opportunity to give their feedback and ask questions. The majority of residents in attendance agreed that two separate buildings would best fit the two groups as opposed to an intergenerational center. Additionally, almost all of the residents in attendance agreed that the Council on Aging should remain on its current site in the center of Town. Some concern was brought up about parking at PHR, but that is currently being studied further by Abacus. The next Capital Facilities meeting will be on May 3rd.
COA and Recreation have been meeting with the architect, Abacus to discuss their needs in a new space, this helps the architect determine a design. Abacus will be presenting options to the Capital Facilities Committee during their March, 28th meeting in the Conway Hearing Room at 5:30PM.
The Capital Facilities Committee will meet on Monday, February 13th at 5:30PM. This will serve as the kickoff meeting for the committee and the selected architect Abacus. Abacus is currently in the process of reviewing community feedback and the programmatic work done by BH+A. They will begin a round of interviews on the week of the 8th with Town Staff. Currently the timeline for a project is Fall Town Meeting. To achieve that goal please see the below schedule:
Capital Facility Committee Meetings
February – Kickoff Meeting with Committee.
March – Presentation of two options. Community feedback and listening session.
April – Refinement of two options based on feedback. Community feedback and listening session.
May – Refinement of two options based on feedback. Vote on preferred option to recommend to the Select Board.
June – Select Board vote to accept or deny recommendation from Capital Facilities Committee.
From there the Town would continue design and public input sessions on the preferred option.
The Town, Left Field, and Vice Chair Mike Riley interviewed three architects to perform the feasibility study for the Recreation Department and Council on Aging. The group ultimately chose Abacus Architects. They have previous experience in similar master planning studies, intergenerational centers, senior housing, council on aging centers, and recreational facilities. They placed a large emphasis on community support and outreach during the process. The Town will be having a kickoff meeting with the architect this week.