Work on community center moves forward as project manager named

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Work on community center moves forward as project manager named
Westborough is hoping to turn the former Boston Sports Club in Bay State Commons into a community center. (Photo/Tami White)

WESTBOROUGH – The first steps to convert 1500 Union St. into a community center are underway.

The Select Board awarded the bid for owner’s project manager to CHA Consulting during its meeting on April 9.

Town Manager Kristi Williams said CHA has a good track record with building senior centers in the area, including in Franklin and Randolph.

She added that the senior center and the Recreation Department have been meeting with other town departments to discuss technical needs and other details prior to moving into the center.

About the building

The future community center building includes 31,000 square feet on the first floor, and 32,500 square feet on the second floor. Amenities include a basketball court and pool (currently drained).

Current plans call for the Recreation Department to move into the second floor, and to relocate the senior center to the first floor.

For the 2025 fiscal year, the costs are estimated at $431,969 for operating expenses; $770,000 for debt service. Expenses would include salaries for a coordinator and custodian, maintenance and utilities.

The building at 1500 Union St. was constructed in 2007; most of its systems – electrical, plumbing, HVAC – are still in place.

The building is considered in good condition, according to reports provided by consultant EBI; the roof and HVAC will have to be replaced within a few years.

Both the membrane and synthetic slate portions of the roof are 16 years old and are considered in good shape, although the membrane shows signs of patching. Ponding was noticed at one corner of the roof.

The cost to replace the membrane portion of the roof has been estimated at $112,000

The  HVAC units were installed in 2007. In overall good condition, they are reaching “end of life” within two years. It is estimated to cost $89,000 to replace the units.

The consultant determined that the fire alarm control panel was in overall good condition and last tested in May 2023. It will be reaching its “end of life” in about nine years and would cost about $15,000 to replace the panel.

The hydraulic elevator was also in good condition, with a current inspection certificate. The elevator’s “end of life” is projected to be within four years. It would cost about $5,000 to renovate the elevator cab.

Moving forward the town plans to issue a request for quotes for an architect.

The community engagement process will take place in the spring and summer, with recommendations on “fitting up” the building to be presented at the fall Town Meeting in October.

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