Southampton Village Hall renovation considered
Southampton Village officials have begun discussing renovations to the century-old Village Hall on Main Street, including the addition of an elevator to make the second and third floors accessible to the public.
Preliminary plans involve renovating either the second or third floor for use by the building department, one of the village's busiest departments. Only the first floor is being used now for office space, with the second floor used to store documents.
Southampton pays about $60,000 a year for the building department's lease for its office on Hill Street, said village administrator Stephen Funsch. The village would pay about $132,000 the first year of a five-year bond for $600,000 for needed renovations to Village Hall, and smaller amounts in subsequent years, assuming an interest rate as low as 2 percent.
"There has not been any work done there in many years," Mayor Mark Epley said.
Installing an elevator would be one of the biggest expenses, Funsch said, adding that village employees would do as much of the construction work as possible.
The bond also would pay for repairs to the Agawam Memorial, a World War I monument located at Agawam Park, which was built in 1923 and saw its last renovation in the late 1980s.
The village is looking to do fundraising for that project.
The board of trustees discussed whether the second floor or third floor would be better for the building department; the third floor is easier to renovate, but the second floor is more easily reached by those using stairs.
Discussion is scheduled to continue at the Nov. 20 work session. The majority of the work could be done over the winter, said Funsch, in order to have less distractions during the busy summer months.