NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

November 19, 2012

Revamping Salisbury

Town looks into updating police, fire, DPW buildings

SALISBURY — On any given day, the smell of mold at the 82-year-old Salisbury police station is unmistakable, as is its need for handicapped accessibility, better insulation, an efficient heating and air conditioning system and more space.

And although the police station is the town building most obviously in need of serious help, Salisbury’s Fire Department and Public Works buildings are also short on space and in need of modernization in ways that improve their functionality and working environments, and which could make them more cost-efficient to run.

With so much to analyze and so much at stake financially, town officials are meeting to tackle the problems Salisbury’s facilities are facing now and in light of the town’s future growth.

Along with a committee made up of town officials and local citizens, the hope is that with the help of a consultant, Salisbury will have its buildings and needs assessed, its options laid out and prioritized and a long-term financing plan to consider by spring, according to Town Manager Neil Harrington.

“The goal is that in the next six months we’ll have an analysis of all the issues with the consultant,” Harrington said. “We hope to have a game plan that includes all the possibilities, the priorities, cost and timing. Common sense would tell you this is going to be expensive and this is a long-range plan and not something we can do all at once.”

The consultant hired will be a needs assessment and space specialist, Harrington said, who will work with the ad hoc Facilities Committee Harrington has organized, which consists of himself and fire Chief Rick Souliotis, DPW director Don Levesque, police Chief Tom Fowler, Planning Department director Lisa Pearson, and Selectman Henry Richenburg.

Two residents are also on the committee: Sue Bartlett, a member of the Warrant Advisory Committee who is familiar with fire department functions, and Ron Guilmette, another member of the Warrant Advisory Committee and a retired Massachusetts state trooper.

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