Chip Wright, chairman of the Select Board, said they have been looking into relocating or renovating the town hall, along with the town garage for some time now. Last year, they attempted to purchase a former Catholic church in Danby to use as the new town offices. That arrangement, however, did not work out.
On Thursday, May 23, the select board and road crew met with Steve Bardin of Morton Buildings. They walked the garage area, where the town hall, as well as the transfer station is located.
"After many months of trying to find some raw land somewhere, it did not come to fruition," Wright said.
Before considering building a totally new garage building, Wright said he had brought up possibly just renovating the current garage. Bill Gormley, another select board member, said the building wasn't worth putting any money into.
Originally, the Select Board, along with the road crew discussed moving the town garage across the property to a new location, closer to the road. However, when Bardin looked at the location, he said to do a 30-foot setback from power lines that location would not be very practical. He mentioned that the new garage might possibly work at the end of the property, where sand is now currently stored.
"The site will dictate a lot of what you're going to do," he said. "You have to consider the site plan." Bardin asked about zoning in Danby, which would dictate where the new garage would be located. The town of Danby does not have any zoning ordinances, so the building could be located anywhere. A 10-foot setback from the property line is what Bardin recommended as a starting point. Emergency management recommends 10 feet because a fire truck or ambulance could easily move between the properties. Before Danby can do anything else though, they need a site plan, Bardin said.
"Number one, you have to have a site plan so you can start doing setbacks, you need to figure out where the boundaries are and figure out your usable area," he said. "Then, taking that site plan, have it scaled and then decide what you want for a building and then move it around."
The board would like to renovate the Town Hall to add more office space, a handicapped accessible bathroom, as well as possibly a meeting room. Because of the way the buildings were laid out and the location of the leach field, the town garage has to be moved to make any significant expansion, Wright said. Wright said next spring is the earliest this project could commence. At this point, the board said they will survey the area to potentially see where a building could be located. They will also seek voter approval for this project.