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DPW seeking $10 million

By ADAM URQUHART - Staff Writer | Nov 13, 2019

NASHUA – Officials with the Nashua Division of Public Works hope to have a new office facility constructed at the Nashua Four Hills Landfill sometime by 2022 due to “squalor-like conditions” at its current buildings, but a bond for $6 million must first be approved.

“We’ve outgrown our spaces, and they haven’t been maintained as they should have in say, the last 25 years, and it’s just time to update them,” Director of Public Works Lisa Fauteux said.

In total, the design and construction of this new facility costs $10 million, but approximately $4 million of that bill will be taken care of with the sale of 141-143 Burke St., which received final passage during the Tuesday Board of Aldermen meeting.

This city owned property is currently being used by DPW for the storage of plows and things of that nature, but will be sold to Loyal Holdings LLC. in the amount of $3.9 million. However, to cover the remaining funds needed for the new building, a bond of $6 million will need to pass through the Board of Aldermen, which is R-19-187. Tuesday evening, it was referred to the Budget Review Committee and Board of Public Works, with a public hearing scheduled for 7 p.m. Dec. 2 during the Budget Review Committee meeting.

“Our hope is to – if everything goes as planned – to have have a new building in two years, say two years from Jan. 1,” Fauteux said.

Currently, the facility the division operates at 9 Riverside St. is less than adequate, with files left out in the hallway because of the lack of storage space, cramped work spaces for employees and issues with rodents, to name a few examples. She said the biggest problem in the current office facility is the air quality.

“People often complain of headaches and not feeling well, and allergies in this building, and also we’re very cramped” Fauteux said.

As far as other DPW buildings around the city, she said there is a common theme in that they are just really run down, dirty and have inadequate space for employees to take breaks. She believes this new facility is the responsible way to correct these issues.

This proposed new building will be office space for almost all public works, with the exception of the Wastewater Treatment Department, including Engineering Department, Parks and Recreation Department, Solid Waste Department, Street Department and Administration. Initially, there will not be a garage at this new location.

“This administration building will likely be taken over by the (Nashua) Police Department, which makes sense because they’re right next door and they also have the evidence cage right behind our building,” Fauteux said.

However, she also said most of the existing DPW buildings will need to remain in use, at least for now because there are garage areas attached to some. As far as the current Solid Waste building goes, she said it will eventually be demolished.

Fauteux said the architect DPW is working with is HKT Architects Inc., and the civil engineer who is working directly for the architect is Hoyle, Tanner & Associates Inc. She also said Harvey Construction is the constriction manager, and will continue in that role right through the project. Moreover, next month, members of the public will have an opportunity to discuss the plans.

“We’re taking care of the important thing, which is the people who are really working in squalor-like conditions,” Fauteux said. “These folks are on call 24/7, 365 days a year and work very hard for the city and deserve to have health, safe, clean working conditions and adequate facilities to do their jobs.”

A public hearing has been set for the resolution aiming to authorize $6 million worth of bonds for the design and construction of this new office facility and two other items.

Another item includes Resolution 19-186, which allows officials to issue bonds in the amount of $1.5 million for various improvements at the Solid Waste Department Four Hills Landfill and the purchase of two refuse trucks.

Adam Urquhart may be contacted at 594-1206, or at aurquhart@nashuatelegraph.com.


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