Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What’s the current status of the building exterior?
A: The Selectboard paid for exterior brickwork repair on the west side of the building. The work was completed in November 2020. The Selectboard also paid for repairs on the portico ceiling, portions of which fell on the sidewalk in November 2020. Black River Design has extensive experience with renovating historic buildings and will ensure that the building’s envelope will be in good repair without diminishing its character.

Q: What’s the current status of the town offices and key systems?
A: There are a number of issues with the building as a whole:

  • Non-ADA-compliance
  • Poor and inconsistent HVAC 
  • Energy inefficiency of both the building envelope and systems

Issues with the offices on the first and second floors include: 

  • Uneven and inequitable space allocation (some departments have more than they need while other have less)
  • Awkward configuration (some employees have to walk through the sometimes-occupied conference room to get to their offices)
  • Excessive space for storage

Q: What’s the current status of the theater?
A: As a community space used for movies, performances, and many other events, the theater is overdue for upgrades to the seats, lighting and sound systems, acoustics, projector, and backstage areas. As with the rest of the building, the HVAC systems and other energy-, public safety- and ADA-related upgrades specific to the theater are also a high priority.

Q: Where can I get more information on this project?
A: Please email questions to

Q: Why did you decide to hire Black River Design?
A: The leadership team received bids from BRD, Jay White, Architect, and Bread Loaf Corporation, had virtual and in-person meetings with each firm about their approach to the project, and spoke with two or three references for each firm. We determined that BRD’s expertise, team size, and approach were the best fit for this project.

Q: Why are you waiting until Town Meeting 2022 for a bond vote?
A: The timeline for this project is deliberately long to allow for significant time spent engaging the public; fundraising privately and publicly; applying for as many relevant grants as possible; and completing the design, permitting, bids, and project financing before asking for a bond.

Q: Are there plans I can see now?
A: We have some conceptual plans that helped us loosely design our project scope, but we are now looking at the building anew and making more thorough assessments. Our goal is to finalize the design and budget by mid-2021.