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HOPKINTON - If you have ever been confused as to which door to use when standing outside the front entrance of Hopkinton Town Hall, you are not alone. Town Manager William McGarry admitted that the two front doors often cause confusion amongst visitors, and it would benefit all if town hall had a more prominent entrance way for the public.
That, however, is just the surface of the additions and renovations that are planned at town hall and that will be put to the fate of the town's voters in the form of a warrant that would authorize the town to borrow up to $900,000 for the town hall consolidation project during the upcoming financial referendum on June 12.
The project would see a new addition built behind the existing town hall, and some minor renovations in the old building. The purpose would be to consolidate all town offices under one roof, whereas they are currently spread throughout town.
The town is asking voters to authorize the borrowing of the money this year as an alternative to setting aside funding for each of the next eight to 10 years. McGarry said that borrowing the money now would save money in the long run.
"Because of the building costs and anticipated higher interest rates in the year ahead, there are more advantages for the town to borrow the money instead of trying to save it on an incremental basis over a number of years," he said.
He also said that borrowing the money would allow the project to begin sooner.
The addition to town hall would be large enough to hold several offices, and there would also be additional parking at the building. Currently, the town manager and secretary are situated at the Crandall House in Ashaway, building and zoning officials are set up at the Dept. of Public Works (DPW) on Woodville Road, and the town planner and finance director work from the Thayer House, which is adjacent to town hall.
The new plan would see all of the officials working right down the corridor from each other.
"It is a very simple and basic floor plan in the shape of a 'T,'" McGarry said.
For more information, pick up a copy of The Chariho Times.