Speaking to a group of seniors at a special luncheon to thank volunteers at the Council of Aging, John Anderson, vice-chairman of the Board of Selectmen, asked those in attendance to support Article 11, the purchase of 75 Lambert Ave., at this year’s .
The property is located essentially at the end of the driveway leading to the Senior Center. The building that sits on the property now is dilapidated, but it is not the building itself that interests Anderson—it’s the land, and with it, a chance for the current to eventually expand its facilities.
There are no imminent plans to do so, but it keeps the options open, according to Anderson.
The Senior Center and Youth Commission building is currently landlocked, Anderson explains, because if the building were to expand, a significant amount of parking would be lost. And, the building cannot be expanded upwards, with additional levels.
Therefore, Anderson said the purchase of the Lambert Ave. property would give the Senior Center/Youth Commission a chance to expand, and relocate the parking lot, or add another structure on the Lambert Ave. parcel.
“The most important part of it is that piece of property hopefully will not go to some other entity or person,” Anderson said. “It would really be a detrimental thing for the Senior Center.”
About three years ago, the Youth Commission moved into the Senior Center’s building, and the two have been sharing space since.
“[The Youth Commission] is a little cramped for space, the seniors are a little bit cramped for space,” Anderson said. “Ultimately, we’re going to need to expand that building.”
Anderson said the purchase of 75 Lambert Ave. gives the town “the perfect opportunity to do that.”
The town is currently in negotiations to determine a purchase price for the property, with Town Meeting members making the final decision of whether to go through with the purchase.
Anderson said the purchase price may be settled by Town Meeting, which starts Monday, May 2, but there is a chance this will not be the case as well.
While the Board of Selectmen did not take a formal vote on the matter, Anderson said the Board supports the purchase of this land. The Finance Committee referred the matter to Town Meeting.
“I served on the Council on Aging before I was elected to the Board of Selectmen and we always talked about wouldn’t it be nice to pick up that piece of property,” Anderson said. “It’s come to a realization.”