October 28, 2016

Planning Office undergoing renovations2/26/09

Feb. 26, 2009

By Tim Simard

Observer staff

Residents entering the planning and zoning office will notice some changes in the coming weeks.

In an effort to expand the office and make it easier for the public to research plans, a new reception area is being created, Planning  Director Ken Belliveau said. The renovations aim to make the office more accessible to the public, he added.

The office, located on the first floor of the Town Hall Annex, used to house the Williston Police Department. Now, the former police reception area will become the planning office’s reception area. Planning Technician Carol Daigle will move her desk into the new, refurbished room, which will be the first office someone sees upon entering the building.

Belliveau said if it worked for the police, it could work for the Planning Department.

“Why not have our reception over here,” Belliveau said.

To connect the new reception area with the rest of the office, town workers this weekend blasted a new door through a wall that had been built up with granite and brick. The workers are actually creating a door where one used to exist. Much of the planning office is located in a building extension from the 1950s, Public Works Director Neil Boyden said. When the extension was built, the old door was boarded up.

“It was a door, then it wasn’t a door, and now it’s a door again,” Boyden said.

Daigle’s former desk, in what used to be the reception room for the planning office, will hold one to two desks for the public, developers and paralegals to do research on the town’s development projects.

Belliveau said the public currently only has a few places, including a large conference room, to review documents and plans in the office. When that room is in use, there is hardly any space for the public, he said.

Belliveau said the existing entrance to the Planning Office will soon be locked and closed off, making Daigle’s reception area the only way to get into the office.

Belliveau said there is $20,000 available for the project in a construction fund that became available this year. Boyden said the cost of the renovations would most likely be $6,000 to $7,00 — a high estimate, in his opinion.

Boyden said there are also plans to create another office near the main conference room, but that won’t happen right away.

“We don’t really have the need for it yet, but it does give us the flexibility for an office,” Boyden said.

Belliveau also wants the office’s windows replaced in the near future to maximize energy efficiency in the building.



  1. Mary Martin says:

    I would like to explain the charges of unlawful restraint because it sounds really awful. No we didn’t hold anyone hostage. We were simply standing in front of some VT Gas/Michel’s trucks. They were in no way restrained. When the men decided to leave, they simply backed up and took off. The police have been hired by VT Gas and they sure do have a way of turning a phrase.

    Mr. Recchia refers to this action as a “last-ditch” attempt to scuttle the pipeline. Wrong again! This was far from our last attempt to bring sanity and reason to our state officials who refuse to listen or help.

    Nate Palmer and Kari Cuneo and their families are not the only land owners who have fought this immoral taking of their land. So many folks have lost that fight for lack of time and money. It’s quite intimidating to go before the Public Service Board and their team of lawyers, to sit down at a table filled with VT Gas attorneys and not have anyone to watch your back and advise you.

    When people are up against the wall, they fight back any way they can. Peaceful protests not only express our frustration but they help bring attention to what is happening to our friends and neighbors..

    So Mr. Recchia, we are not done!

Speak Your Mind