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Thread: Wayland’s New Public Works Facility: Now is the Time to Act

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    Nov 2005

    Default Wayland’s New Public Works Facility: Now is the Time to Act

    The following was submitted by the Permanent Municipal Building Committee:

    Some very important issues will be decided at April’s Annual Town Meeting. An important article at next month’s town meeting will be to approve the funding for the construction of a maintenance, repair and storage facility to support the daily operations of Wayland’s Department of Public Works. We would like to update voters on this critical project and encourage you not only to attend town meeting, but also to attend two public forums in the upcoming weeks.

    The Permanent Municipal Building Committee was established in the spring of 2011 to assist the town in identifying, assessing and facilitating the design and construction of municipal building projects. The committee is comprised of town residents with expertise in structural and civil engineering, building design and construction, municipal construction and project management with two members having sat on the High School Building Committee. The Public Buildings Director also sits on the Committee. Our charge is to assist the town with the evaluation and feasibility of siting and construction of a municipal use public works facility.

    The Committee has held over twenty meetings to date, all of which have been open to the public. With our engineering consultant (Weston & Sampson), our focus has been on reducing overall project scope and size while making the new DPW facility functional for many years to come. We held a public input session on the proposed facility in October 9, 2012 and open houses at the existing DPW facility on March 24, 2012 and September 22, 2012 with more scheduled.

    We are also actively engaging with other town boards to address wetlands and environmental issues, access to the new site, and any impact on historical artifacts with this project. The project is currently out for competitive bid so that we will have a firm number to present residents at our upcoming public presentation and at town meeting.

    The existing 13,000 square foot DPW facility located at 195 Main Street in front of the Wayland Middle School was built in the 1930’s which has seen no capital improvements in over 40 years. The current facility has numerous deficiencies including:

    • mechanical, air handling, electrical and plumbing systems that have far exceeded their expected life
    • inadequate water distribution and toilet facilities
    • maintenance bays that are grossly undersized to accommodate most of the department’s vehicle fleet to perform routine maintenance
    • lack of proper hydraulic lifts for heavy equipment requiring mechanics to work on the floor during repairs.
    • equipment parts room which is too small to keep a proper inventory of replacement parts and small tools
    • the building is in a chronic deteriorated state with rotted and rusted steel beams, a structurally unsound roof, and constantly leaking pipes
    • lack of office to perform basic administrative functions and to efficiently serve the public

    As one long-time DPW employee recently stated following the February ’13 blizzard: “I welcome anyone…to visit our garage before passing judgment on the needs versus the wants of the DPW. After working 36 hours, we returned yesterday to frozen doors – effectively locking us out of the building. Once we got in, we were then greeted with 2” of water covering the floor of the whole garage – including the restrooms and break rooms. This was not the result of a broken pipe, but a regular occurrence due to an inadequate drainage system overflowing. In addition, our response time was delayed due to the fact that the mixture in two of our sanders was frozen and needed to be thawed before they were operational, due to the fact that the trucks do not fit in the garage and could not be stored inside…The list of hindrances and obstacles we overcame is too numerous to mention.”

    The town has actually been examining a new DPW facility for many years. In 2004, the Master Plan identified numerous deficiencies and shortcomings at the existing site. In 2011, Town Meeting authorized $175,000 for the planning, site selection and schematic design for a new facility. At the April 2012 Town Meeting, voters approved designating the town-owned parcel of land on River Road for the project appropriating $725,000 for construction documents and bidding. The April 2012 Town Meeting adopted a resolution that calls for all access to be from Route 20 near the transfer station, while the River Road entrance will be for emergencies only.

    Based on the work of the Committee, a new DPW facility of approximately 37,600 square feet is proposed, representing an 18 – 19% reduction in building size and functionality from the original construction plans to make this as cost-effective a project as possible while also meeting the town’s growing needs. The benefits of a new DPW facility are numerous:

    • Protection for the DPW’s multi-million dollar vehicle fleet which will significantly extend the useful life of these vehicles (storing and maintaining vehicles inside will eliminate inefficiencies and result in savings in overtime, labor and fuel, increased production, and lowered emissions)
    • Safer work environment and retention of dedicated employees
    • More efficient response times in responding to storms, downed trees, broken water mains and floods
    • Avoiding the expenditure of millions of dollars in needed capital improvements on the existing DPW facility, which would still be inadequate to support existing operations
    • Potential development of the existing DPW site on Main Street

    The new proposed facility will be sited on town-owned land between Route 20 and River Road which is currently used by the DPW for salt storage. The Board of Selectmen and Finance Committee support this article for passage at town meeting. Although interest rates are still at historic lows, we are starting to see construction costs begin to rise. Further delay could mean higher costs. This is the best time to proceed with this important project. Bottom line is that the current facility has outlived its useful life by many years (if not decades); our employees and town residents deserve better and this is long overdue.

    In the coming weeks, there will be two important forums to provide voters more specifics on the program as well as an open house at the current DPW facility prior to town meeting. There is a public presentation on the proposed DPW facility scheduled for 7:00 pm on Tuesday, March 26th at Town Building that will describe project details and estimated costs based on bid results. There is also an open house at the existing DPW facility at 195 Main Street from 9:00 – 1:00 pm on Saturday, March 30th. If you haven’t had an opportunity to attend one of these forums in the past, now is the time to learn more about this time-sensitive project. You can also view a detailed site plan and other project documents on the Wayland website ( We hope to see you at these upcoming forums and at town meeting.

    DPW Model Views.pdf

    Click on the images below for larger versions
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    Permanent Municipal Building Committee - Matt Kaufmann (chair), David George (vice chair), Eric Sheffels, Brian Chase, Mark Reardon, Tom Abdella (for duration of DPW facility project), Jon Mishara (for duration of DPW facility project)
    Last edited by Administrator; 03-10-2013 at 04:39 PM. Reason: fix formatting

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