Rather than building from ground up or renovating the current senior center on Brook Street, Ellen Bernardi says they simply want to move into the former Pier 44 building, renamed the Harbor Community Building after it was purchased by Scituate two years ago.
Bernadi says it will be a long overdue improvement from their current center which is 440 square feet, “A few years ago there was study done on the appropriate size, for a town this size, of a senior building and that came in at 7,500-10,000 square feet. So even at 3,100 square feet it may limit some projects but it certainly will open up many more.”
The Harbor Community Building has been vacant since it was bought, only being used occasionally for committee meetings.
Bernardi, who’s a Council on Aging volunteer, proposed an idea to Selectmen in July to transform it into a multi-use facility using MBTA mitigation funds that have been sitting since 2010.
“From what I can understand, it’s little money and there is money, as part of the mitigation agreement, for making the building ready for whatever the use is going to be. And certainly to put in office space and a workable kitchen would not really take that much of the money,” says Bernardi
She believes the building could be used for recreation and youth programs as well as committee meetings at night.
According to the Scituate woman, Selectmen told her they’re considering the proposal.
But she warns that the senior population in town is on the rise, currently making up 33% of the voting population.