Town officials last week approved the purchase of approximately $14,000 in sidewalk bricks, following an earlier materials shortage.
After facing an initial delay due to the shortage, the town “jumped on” the bricks when they finally became available, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann.
“We provide brick toward other people that are doing work in the downtown areas,” Mann told the Board of Selectmen at its regular meeting, held in Town Hall and via videoconference.
“So you had Forest Street had some work, and then we had some additional work on Elm Street and then trying to pre-buy for the work on Elm Street from Park Street to Grove in front of the train station … to try to be ahead of the supply chain issue because that is what we ran into originally for the bumpouts,” Mann said. “I had a certain amount of material and then we had to wait for the rest of the material to come and move the contractor away to a different location to come back. That material is on site versus having to move people around. It’s not efficient to move them around. Thankfully we had places to go, but it’s still a disruption that I don’t like to have.”
First Selectman Kevin Moynihan and Selectmen Kathleen Corbet and Nick Williams voted 3-0 in favor of the $14,230.92 purchase.
The selectmen asked whether Mann had doubled a prior order (yes) and where the material will be stored (all brick and granite are stored at the Highway Department).
Corbet asked for a reminder on what is the total cost for sidewalk bricks..
This year the amount budgeted was $300,000, Mann said.
“I essence we spent the work that will be completed on Park Street that was just approved,” he said. “That will expend the amount that we have available for the year. We’ll be looking toward getting more monies in this budget cycle and then starting the whole process again.”
The only queued-up project that has been encumbered is to extend and replace sidewalks along Main Street and Oenoke Ridge between Heritage Hill and Parade Hill Roads, he said. That project will cost close to $300,000 which “took up a good portion of the monies we had,” Mann said. In the upcoming budget year, Public Works will seek an allotment of about $500,000—$300,000 for sidewalk replacement and another $200,000 for “additional sidewalks or segments that you want to complete.”