Council, architects resume planning for new Town Hall

Published 4:30 pm Friday, May 17, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

The Windsor Town Council met with engineers and a builder April 30 to continue its exploration into the possibility of building a new Town Hall.

The placement of the new municipal building would be off of Shirley Drive on a piece of property located between East Windsor Boulevard (U.S. Route 460) and Holland Drive, adjacent to the Windsor Police Department building. 

Moseley Architects worked up several design options with cost estimates in the 2016-17 timeframe, but the project was tabled then due to several other capital projects being considered at that time.

Councilman Walter Bernacki has led the effort to revive the new Town Hall project, and on April 9, the Town Council voted unanimously to take the next step forward on the building’s development, spending $52,022 to finish the schematic design and update cost estimates.

The Town Council hosted a kickoff meeting at the current Town Hall on April 30 that featured Tony Bell and David Sears, of Moseley Architects, and Jamie Weist, of Kimley-Horn.

Sears noted that he is serving as project manager on this project. 

Bell said, “I’ll be serving as managing principal, and I’ll assist David as we move this forward.”

Weist said he is working on the site and utilities and all the other things that support the building.

Bell noted that they all had two goals for the April 30 meeting.

“No. 1 (is) to confirm any changes to the space program that the town wants to implement,” he said. “And what do I mean by ‘space program’? Space program is the list of spaces, i.e. the menu of the building.”

He presented spreadsheets and graphics listing the different rooms that fill up the space of the proposed Town Hall.

“If it’s not in the list of spaces, you’re not going to find it in the building,” he said. “Conversely, as you walk through that building on ribbon-cutting day, you’ll be able to walk through every space that’s on that list based on the parameters that we define tonight or in the subsequent meetings that we’ll have. But we can’t move forward with anything until we’ve nailed down that space program.

“Goal No. 2 is looking at our site plan — Jamie will talk to that — and looking at our floor plan and determining (if there are) any substantial changes we want to make,” he said.

Bell, Weist and Sears each took turns presenting and collaborating with council members and town staff during the meeting. 

Windsor Town Manager William Saunders helped project the number of employees the town will need by 2030 and 2040, which influenced the development of the building’s space program.

The council also reviewed a floor plan, a site plan and exterior designs of the building that included different roofing concepts.

Council and staff suggested some changes to the existing plans, and in several instances Bell and Sears were able to make preliminary on-the-spot changes to the graphics to reflect the directives given.

The square footage estimate of the Town Hall building following input given during the meeting was more than 8,200, though this is still subject to change.

The meeting ran for a little more than two hours.

Near its conclusion, Sears said, “We will put something together for you once we’ve consolidated all this information. We’ll start by giving you a memorandum of what we talked about, and we might include sketches of what we talked about now, but it will be followed by our execution of what we talked about with the program.”