Town building renovation progressing in Brownstown


While renovation continues on the interior of the new location for the town hall and police department in Brownstown, attention is now turning to the exterior.

The Brownstown Town Council has hired S and J Excavation and Concrete of Brownstown to do concrete work near the building at 116 E. Cross St.

That includes replacing the sidewalk from the front of the building to the intersection of Sugar Street. To be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, a ramp will added at the corner of Cross and Sugar streets, and the sidewalk will be 5 feet wide.

Clerk-Treasurer David Willey said there will be some grass between the sidewalk and curb.

Councilwoman Sharon Koch had some reservations about redoing the sidewalk in front of the residence next door that extends to the corner of Sugar Street. Residents are responsible for upkeeping sidewalks on their property.

“I don’t think we should pay for a sidewalk in front of a residence because I think it opens a can of worms for the entire town,” she said.

Willey said the sidewalk is in bad shape from Sugar Street to the town building property, but it’s in good condition from there to the alley. Councilman Mark Reynolds said improving the sidewalk is a benefit because it will provide access to the town hall.

There also will be a ramp and two handicap parking spots in front of the entrance to the building with an unloading zone in between them. A crosswalk also will be added to provide access across Cross Street to the handicap ramp and entrance to the courthouse sidewalk.

“We want town hall to be approachable and safe,” council President Gregg Goshorn said.

S and J also will replace the concrete near the back of the building, level the concrete near the garage door and add a retaining wall between the building and the property next door. A perimeter drain also will be installed on the back of the building.

Inside the building, Koch said the ceilings in the front, including in the new meeting room, will be white, while the rest of the building will have black ceilings.

With the flooring in the employee restrooms, luxury vinyl tile will be used for the locker rooms and epoxy for the showers. The original plan was to paint the floor and put a clear coat over it, but that was nixed since it will get wet. A transition strip and silicone caulk will help keep water from getting under the LVT floor, Koch said.

In the back of the building, Koch asked the council’s opinion on the police department’s garage bay. The walls are going to be painted, but should the rest of the space be cleaned and painted, left unpainted or replaced with drywall?

Cleaning and painting would cost $2,220, while changing to drywall would cost $5,790.

“I’ll be honest, my opinion, it’s kind of hard to drop this kind of money in one building and leave that garage bay looking the way it currently looks,” Koch said.

“I know the town has done a lot, but it’s something we want to be proud of. It’s going to be there for several years,” Police Chief Tom Hanner said. “There will be other agencies visiting and there will be folks visiting our PD.”

Councilman Gary Drake, who serves as a liaison to the police department, agreed with Koch and Hanner.

“I think if we’re going to do it, we need to do it all,” he said. “Other agencies come, you guys want to be able to be proud of your workspace.”

The council unanimously agreed to clean and paint the area.

The adjacent caged side will have drywall painted gray.

“That area will look nice and will get police traffic,” Koch said.

Finally, the council recently approved a quote of $2,353 from Goecker Construction Inc. of Seymour to add 995 square feet of drop ceiling and change the lighting to fit in the police department portion of the building.

Goecker is the contractor for the renovation project.