NORTHBRIDGE, Mass. – Officials expected many of the approximately 20 abutters to 371 Douglas Road invited to a neighborhood meeting Wednesday would attend with questions for Department of Public Works Director James Shuris.
But just one abutter attended the meeting called by Shuris and Town Manager Theodore Kozak to discuss plans to move DPW operations to the Douglas Road address.
Shuris wants neighborhood support at a special town meeting Dec. 4 when voters will be asked to purchase the former Old Colony Printing at 371 Douglas Road for $995,000 and borrow an additional amount of money (an estimated $2.1 million) to retrofit the 19,000-square-foot building to fit DPW needs.
If approved, about $125,000 of the $2.1 million will be used to renovate the current DPW facility on Fletcher Street, which will continue to be used for winter operations, Shuris said.
Kozak suggested a second neighborhood meeting and expanding the reach. Invitations will be sent to approximately 100 families living on Douglas Road, Hastings Road, Cliff Street and Windsor Ridge. That meeting will be during the week after Thanksgiving, the date and time to be announced.
Paul Reitz of 68 Hastings Road said noise was his biggest concern. Shuris said a barrier against sight and noise will be built on a portion of the property, and he noted there will be little noise as the loading of sand and salt will remain at the Fletcher Street property.
Kozak said neighborhood involvement is important.
“One thing we don’t want to do it make it bad for the neighbors. We want it to be a win-win situation,’’ he said.