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Town Board considering purchase of vacant fire hall

Supervisor Steven C. Richards said he expects a report to be completed by next week that could help the Town Board determine whether it should buy the former Active House Fire Hall to house Town Court and the Police Department.

Town leaders are considering buying the 12,000-square-foot building at 3995 Lockport Road for $150,000. Engineers surveyed the site Wednesday to determine its condition, Richards said.

If the board decides to buy the building, it could replace an $800,000 plan to expand Town Hall on Lockport Road by 2,500 square feet for police and court employees. Designs for the expansion were already drawn up when the fire chief asked the board to consider purchasing the vacant fire hall.

"You can't ignore saving the taxpayers $650,000," Richards said. "It's something you've got to look at."

The report will outline the condition of the building and will help the board determine whether it would be cheaper to purchase and renovate the building than to expand Town Hall, Richards said.

Town leaders are considering locating police, courts, storage and a community room in the former fire hall, said Councilman Robert A. Clark, a member of Active Hose.

The building was used as a fire hall until February 2001. At that time, Active Hose moved to a fire hall closer to the center of town that had been occupied by former Niagara No. 1 Fire Company until it was shut down.

The town is also planning to replace two heating and cooling units at Town Hall and replace the building's roof. Richards said the roof replacement is estimated to cost between $60,000 and $85,000.

The Town Board will vote during its regular meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday whether to award a $16,000 contract to install two heating and cooling units to the lowest bidder, D.V. Brown Associates.

e-mail: djewell@buffnews.com

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