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Facilities Steering Committee Phase II Minutes 1/13/2018
Facilities Steering Committee, Phase II
Town of Princeton, MA
Meeting minutes for 13Nov2018
7pm at town hall annex

Attending for the committee: Richard Chase, Noelani Chase, Rick McCowan, Dennis Moore

Attending for the Select board/public: Karen Cruise

Richard Chase opened the meeting at 7:00 pm.

Committee Members approved minutes for 11/05/2018 and revised minutes from 10/15/2018.

Margot from JWA replied to the FSC’s questions. General discussion on responses from JWA and further clarification/follow-up for the upcoming in-person meeting.
  • Still need (JWA) to provide more granularity on what a ‘minimum building’ is based on department needs, applicable codes and building standards.
  • Since the current public safety plan has only 4 apparatus bays, 1 sally port, and no training room, does this even meet minimum standards or the needs of the departments respectively?
  • Proposed going back to JWA and asking what we can get for $5M or even $4M? Is this even feasible?
  • Further discussion on State Bond Bill, and what we need to do to be “shovel ready” or have “skin in the game”, consensus was that we don’t want JWA contacting the (state) representatives directly.
  • Richard to invite Chief Bennett and Chief Powers to meet with JWA, proposed meeting is the week of November 26th.
  • Further discussions needed with the Town on tax implications and impacts to other projects in need.
General discussion on less expensive building materials, techniques or methodologies which could be used to bring down the cost, what is low incremental cost now with significant benefit and or much higher costs in the future?
  • JWA already proposed a significant portion of the public safety complex be of pre-engineered metal building construction (this was factored into the $7M). Per JWA, the number one complaint of other public safety buildings was the deterioration on areas the Town saved money (HVAC, Windows, and Leaking Roofs).
  • Building code minimums in MA already very high.
  • What other materials could the Town use rather than pre-engineered metal that could reduce cost, while providing efficiencies down the road?
  • Ask JWA: Are there other ways the Town can save, rather than reducing building materials and size, such as on design or contractor fees, site work, cost estimators etc.?
General discussion on the phasing of the fire and police areas of the public safety facility:
  • JWA felt there was no benefit to phasing since the proposed construction is on an un-utilized site and moreover as this project was small in scale it is likely that phasing will increase the construction costs considerably.
General discussion on the Design-Build process versus the Design-Bid-Build process and the approach the Town is required to take based on procurement laws, etc. More clarification needed from Princeton Town Administrator.
  • Compare to other Towns -> Spencer used a Design- Build (more clarification needed)
  • Can we go with a package builder?
  • Morton Builders offers a 50 year guarantee
  • Rick received clarification from Morton Builders that $1.3M for the Wilton Country Fire Station included everything except site costs. Still need cost estimate on a public safety building, and conceptual drawings, and whether or not the Town can use Morton Builders who is a Design-Build company.
  • Rick to invite Keith Holloway, Sales Consultant from Morton Builders to an upcoming FSC meeting.
General discussion on Townsend Fire Station #3. Need to see inside, plans and talk to occupants to see how building suits their needs, in order to get better understanding if it could meet Princeton’s needs. Lessons learned approach.
  • Richard to reach out to Chief Bennett and then Townsend Town Administrator (and potentially Townsend Fire Chief) for details.
  • Per Tim Kelly; The Townsend Buildings are Fire Stations Only. ~The Harbor Station has a couple of bays and a kitchen and a day room. ~No office space. ~The New West Townsend station has 2 bays and a small space. ~The West and Harbor stations are unmanned, unstaffed satellite stations.
General discussion on the pros and cons of reducing the building too much. JWA didn’t see many more areas to cut without impacting the long-term usefulness of the facility.
  • Are we doing the Town a disservice if we cut the building down too much, and then receive full (or even partial) funding from the Bond Bill? The Town asked for $9M for Public Safety.
Reviewed and answered questions from Town Residents, began drafting future Q&A postings. Need to review recent JWA information and draft a summary (or Q&A) for public posting.

Quick discussion on the gym and the importance of keeping it in the new complex. Consensus was that it is heavily used by both fire and police departments, serves multiple purposes in that it brings the department together, huge bonus if a call comes in while staff is at gym as it reduces response time. Reiteration that equipment was covered by a grant.

Quick discussion on whether the Town should consider working with a different Architect? General consensus was that the Town has already spent considerable time, money and efforts with JWA; that it would not be fiscally responsible to start over, as the work done by JWA wouldn’t transfer to a new firm. In the principle of positioning the Town favorably for State funding through the Bond Bill, decision was made to move forward with JWA as the Architect, while continuing to explore our building options and research Design-Build and Design-Bid-Build processes more.

Reconfirmed the need for a long term Facilities Committee to oversee continuous improvement, budgeting and maintenance of any new and/or renovated buildings going forward. Similar to the Roads Committee.

Quick affirmation on the importance of moving forward with the public safety project, not only to put the Town in the best possible position to receive state funding through the Bond Bill but to give the voters all available information for a well-informed vote in the Spring.

Meeting Adjourned at 8:04pm

Submitted by, Noelani Chase


Town of Princeton, 6 Town Hall Drive, Princeton, MA 01541