NORTHBRIDGE, Mass. – A $76,000 feasibility study conducted by HKT Architects to redevelop the Department of Public Works on Fletcher Street, and the $8 million estimate that resulted, will likely be shelved.
There doesn’t appear to be an “appetite’’ by the Board of Selectmen or taxpayers to pay $8 million for a DPW facility, said Building, Planning and Construction Committee member Patrick Moynihan.
Some of the information in that feasibility study, however – specifically, a detailed list of costs provided by an HKT estimator – may help DPW Director James Shuris with a new task assigned to him by the BPCC at its meeting Thursday night.
Shuris has been asked to estimate the cost to retrofit existing buildings – one on Douglas Road and another on Linwood Avenue – both of which are for sale and a size that fits the DPW's needs.
The BPCC also is taking another look at a plan designed by registered structural engineer Neal Mitchell for the waste water treatment plant on Providence Road.
Mitchell has said his design could be built for $2.1 million. He will be asked to provide a detailed list of costs to prove the $2.1 million figure is feasible. If he can’t, that proposal will also be shelved.
All three proposals could meet the needs of the DPW, Shuris said.
BPCC member Tim Doiron said it appears voters want to spend no more than $2 million for a DPW facility.
Shuris said he is confident the building on Douglas Road – the former Old Colony Printing – could be purchased and converted into a DPW building for close to the $2-$2.5 million mark. If the DPW moves to Douglas Road, its winter operations would remain on Fletcher Street.
He said he doesn’t have enough information yet on the Linwood Avenue building and could not comment on a cost estimate.
The town is seeking requests for proposals for a DPW facility, and those bids will be opened on Sept. 28.
In the meantime, Shuris will estimate costs and bring that information to the Board of Selectmen. The board could then choose to support a BPCC request to pay for a professional estimate so firm costs can be brought before voters at the Fall Annual Town Meeting on Oct. 23.
The BPCC meets again on Sept. 13.