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COVID-19 and other challenges to the supply chain are increasing the cost of building supplies. Sharon hopes to move ahead with building repairs before costs get even higher. Photo by Cynthia Hochswender

Rising cost of materials adds urgency to Community Hall restoration project

SHARON — Escalating materials costs led the Board of Selectmen to agree to move ahead on getting estimates for renovating the interior of the Community Hall.

A review of the proposal and discussion of the cost of delay were discussed at their regular meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 12.

Parks and Recreation Director Matt Andrulis-Mette reported that plans call for interior renovation, estimated now to cost $400,000, up by $100,000 over earlier figures, largely due to increases in cost of materials.

While formal architectural drawings have not yet been done, Andrulis-Mette outlined the plans calling for gutting the interior, updating windows and lighting, and improvements to the modest kitchen area as well as the restrooms.

“The outside is in pretty good shape,” Andrulis-Mette said, so the project does not include the building’s exterior. Nor is the upstairs area being considered for renovation because an elevator would be needed to provide public access.

“We would love to see it move ahead toward doing some of the work this winter,” Andrulis-Mette said.

Of concern to the selectmen were the project’s price tag when only the interior will be renovated. They also worried about the effect that ongoing supply chain disruptions will have on the availability of materials.

Following discussion, the selectmen agreed to proceed with sending the itemized project out for bid. Once the bids are available, the town will decide whether to delay or whether to send the project on to consideration by the Board of Finance.

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