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Trustees OK direction of new Town Hall design
4/20/2007 By: Carole McWilliams
Bayfield town trustees gave a generally favorable response Tuesday night to a new schematic design for a new town hall.
They unanimously approved the schematic design and directed staff to move forward with the architect on the next phase.
The design maintains an L-shaped layout at the southwest corner of the Mill Street/ Highway 160B intersection. One wing is two story and houses town offices. The other wing is one story and has office space to be leased to the county, and the marshal’s office with separate entrances.
The town board meeting room is at the corner of the L. Sitting at an angle between the board room and the two story wing is an entrance hall with doors facing the street and the parking lot on the back side of the building.
The two story wing is designed to accommodate a future two story expansion with 4,000 square feet on each floor.
Architect Dennis Humphries presented the new design. Previous designs were criticized as too modernistic, not compatible with the historic downtown.
“We are very sensitive to the materials and the architecture in town,” Humphries said. He noted the Sears blocks used in the old town hall and Mill Street Drug Store, and the river rock wall in front of a house on Mill Street.
The new design has a low river rock wall on the street side, and river rock facing on the bottom part of the building. Above that is vertical wood siding, Humphries said. The town board meeting room has brick facing and a flat roof.
Humphries said he is still trying to get the building down to the 12,000 square feet as directed by the town. About 2,000 of that will be leased to the county. He said the design had been 13,000 square feet, and he has cut that to 12,500 square feet. Town employees were asked to reduce their office space requests.
He advised that cutting another 500 square feet might not make much difference in the total cost.
“Because of the small area, we have to make some hard decisions of who is up (on the second floor) and who is down,” Humphries said. The current layout has the town manager, two conference rooms, a maintenance room and a staff break room upstairs.
Trustee Daryl Yost questioned the total number of conference rooms in the plan.
“You can’t have enough conference rooms,” trustee Rick Smith responded.
An audience member questioned the plan’s energy efficiency, including the sun to help heat the building in winter.
“It won’t be LEAD certified, but we’ll follow those guidelines as much as possible,” Humphries said. With a building like this, keeping it cool is usually a bigger energy demand than heating it, he said.
The layout has offices on the outside walls, with windows that can be opened for ventilation, he said. The idea is to use natural ventilation to reduce air conditioning costs.
Yost said of the design, “It’s coming along pretty good.”
Smith told Humphries, “You incorporated our ideas really well.”