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Construction manager presents first estimate for Hopkinton fire station

Construction on the Hopkinton fire station could cost about $100,000 more than the select board has hoped for the renovation, select board Chairman Jim O’Brien said.

Bonnette, Page & Stone, the firm chosen to manage the project, presented a $2.597 million plan to the select board Monday night.

The town had projected construction costs would be between $2 and $2.5 million to renovate the Pine Street station, which was built in 1974.

Monday’s board meeting was the first time the construction managers were ready to put an estimate on the town’s bill for the project. The board should finalize its cost at its Jan. 20 meeting, O’Brien said.

“They did that for us and did a pretty good first crack at it,” O’Brien said. “We’d like to be lower than $2.5 million; that’s what we’ve been driving toward.”

Bonnette, Page & Stone also presented the town’s options that would raise the cost by adding a pellet boiler system, O’Brien said, or lower it by decreasing square footage.

If approved at town meeting in March, the renovations would add a second floor and a new bay to the building, increasing it from about 5,500 square feet to 16,000 square feet.

Important to the design is a training room that could seat at least 50 people. That space is missing from the current station, where the kitchen is also the lobby and a meeting area for the department.

A five-person committee of Hopkinton residents has also been evaluating the design with the board, which O’Brien said is helpful in balancing “the trade-off between short-term savings and long-term usage of the building.”

“I think getting input from more than just the board of selectmen is important, having those voices and the people who will look through those numbers, look through the department,” O’Brien said.

Even with a slight decrease, the renovations will be the largest budget item at town meeting in years. Last year, voters approved a new highway garage that cost $1.3 million in total. Of that total, the town covered $530,566 of the new building’s cost. The rest of the money came from a settlement with the company that insured the original highway garage, which burned down in 2012.

But O’Brien said the board’s discussions and public meetings on the plans have been positive.

“I think we’re encouraged,” O’Brien said. “I think the meeting last night was actually very productive. I think getting the numbers in front of us and being able to look through the different building costs . . . is making the cost of the building more real to people. The committee and the public has much more information.”

The plan for the renovations is available to the public at town hall and the Pine Street fire station.

(Megan Doyle can be reached at 369-3321 or mdoyle@ cmonitor.com or on Twitter @megan_e_doyle.)

Legacy Comments2

it is no longer astonishing when the elite liberals from the enclave of Republic of Hopkinton propose their newest $$$$$ multi-million project of the year that comes in over budget and cost the taxpayers another arm or a leg. That is not news it is the democrats tradition. (remember the senior center). What is astonishing is that the PUC has a large Pellet boiler rebate program and they obviously don't know a thing about what is available to municipalities for energy programs.

is $156 per square foot unreasonable for a building that is mostly open garage? I think so....

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