Town Hall Renovations On Track, Highway Maint. Garage Plan Nixed
By Edie Johnson
The Blooming Grove first regular August meeting included appreciation for town staff who have toughed the hot weather out while Phase I Town Hall renovations continue. Large portable air conditioners are feeding into an air handling unit and are keeping the building acceptably cool, though noisy. But work is progressing fast now, with the new corridor framed out that will bring the building up to court session codes, and will improve safety with prisoners entering by separate corridor. It will also open the way for a potential Phase II future expansion, since once older buildings like this have any renovation they must then update to all current codes, including handicap accessibility, security, electrical wiring, structural loading and the like. A future additional building expansion has been discussed, but a specific design is still in early stages. Deputy Supervisor George Doering said the renovations are proceeding on track, with only a short delay due to some unexpected wiring issues.
Highway Maintenance Garage Plans Nixed
Detailed engineering plans for a new Highway Maintenance Garage that was reviewed in depth last month were unanimously voted down by board members. The proposed building plans had come in at 33% over the expected cost, and board members presented serious concerns aboutf inadequate storage space for all but 2 highway vehicles as well as a roof line that they questioned as to snow load safety.
Councilwoman Sonia Ayala reported that South Blooming Grove villagers continue to have lot of discontent over the so-called “Blue Bus” that transports mostly women in the village to Kiryas Joel for Shopping. A court decision last week requires the bus company to apply for a new permit. But meanwhile it has continued transporting despite a stop-work order , and villagers have taken photos of it making stops at places not on their permitted route, and on narrow streets where there is no safe place to turn around. Several villagers have again requested that Blooming Grove Police impound the vehicle due to its violations, but the police department has limited jurisdiction over code violations vs. traffic violations. They had hoped that a stack as well as 9 recorded prior violations would have been presented to the judge. The Village has a board meeting scheduled for Monday where there is expected to be an active discussion. They did note that with several new officers having been added to the Police Department, along with a new Chief, there have been a lot more traffic stops along with tickets in areas where speeding is frequent.
Councilman Tom DeVinko said that a possible change to added commercial zoning in the Village of Washingtonville has not had as much public participation as he would hope, in order to keep transparency in the process.
Councilman Steven Amante reported that residents have greatly appreciated the paving work recently done by the Highway Department. He is working on several safety issues including a request for speed bumps for Route 208 before and after its intersection with Round Hill Rd. The parking lot at Goosepond Park ,17M and Craigville Road is being worked on to try to improve safe crossing of the highway for hikers and horseback riders. Speed bumps are also being considered for Museum Village Rd. where accidents are a longstanding problem.
More great stories in this week’s Orange County Post
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