Consultants met with the Scituate Board of Selectmen Tuesday night and presented their findings of a feasibility study, to determine if the Gates Middle School is structurally sound.
Consultants determined that although the school has many problems with the roof, windows and mechanical and electrical systems, the basic structure of the building is still sound and could be used for other town departments, or maybe even another school.
Selectman Rick Murray addressed the issue and said, “The take home message we all got is that the school has good bones, but it’s a little tired. However, it’s very structurally sound, with no safety issues whatsoever. Certainly it can hold on for the next couple of years, while we discuss what we want to do in town.”
Selectmen chair Tony Vegnani says the next step is a $375,000 town meeting warrant article to fund a study to determine how the Gates School fits in with the need for upgrading other town buildings in Scituate.
“The next step is to see where other components can go in the town. So, if by chance we wanted to move town hall to the Gates School, could a middle school go where the current town hall is and give us that ‘campus effect’ that we’ve been talking about for years? If that’s the case, is there a place for the police and fire to go, that could possibly better service the West End and North Scituate? So that’s really the next step and that’s why there’s an article in the capital plan that will help fund that. Once that happens, we’ll start getting numbers together and see if the town has an appetite for the expense that will be there,” Vegnani said.