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Richfield trustees hire architect for new office

8/15/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Jeff Gorman

The Richfield Township trustees hired an architect to design a new township office at their Aug. 8 meeting.

The new office space will be located on the same property as the township’s service facility on Boston Mills Road.

Four architects submitted bids for the project: two from Richfield (Ryba Architects and Mark Andrews Kearney), one from Akron (GPD Group) and one from Bath (Louis & Partners Design).

After an executive session, the trustees agreed to hire GPD, which submitted a bid of $3,600 for the concept design and $18,000 for full architectural services. GPD estimated the construction would cost $300,000, according to township officials.

The trustees asked Fiscal Officer Laurie Pinney and Township Administrator Linda Bowmer to work on a timetable for the financing and construction of the new building.

They both met one day before the meeting with Tom Trotter, whom the trustees hired last month to help with the financing process.

“Our debt is almost nonexistent, so we are in a good position to borrow money,” Pinney said.

The trustees had been talking about remaining in their current offices behind the fire station as the 10-year rent-free period expires, but they balked at the $1,200 monthly rent proposed by Richfield Village.

The township also has been looking into the possibility of a temporary office trailer on the Boston Mills Road site while the new office is being built.

In other news, Trustee Janet Jankura said the committee that had been investigating the idea of a Richfield-Bath recreation center was on hold, but that Richfield Village was going ahead with a mail survey on a Richfield-only recreation center.

Trustees David Wyatt and Laurie Peters Gilmore said the township might do a similar survey of its residents on the recreation center idea.

The trustees announced the township will pay for the entertainment at Community Day rather than the inflatables. They approved the expense of $3,858 for United Sound Technologies, Taylor Rental (dance floor) and entertainment acts Cruisin’, Cold Blue Steele, Moonlight Serenade and Dr. Insecta’s Bug Experience.

Gilmore clarified that in the past, when the township sponsored the inflatables, the money from the tickets was donated to the Kiwanis club.

In other business:

  • Police Chief Keith Morgan talked about Summit County’s new panhandling ordinance, which affects townships only. It prohibits begging within 25 feet of intersections, shopping plaza entrances, churches, libraries, schools, bus stops, ATMs and cafés.
    He said the ordinance is also designed to stop aggressive panhandlers who are “looking for a handout,” for example, by telling a story that they ran out of gas and their kids are hungry.
    Morgan also talked to the trustees about the gunshots they heard outside the meeting. The police officers were qualifying with their new Smith & Wesson guns, the chief said. The department traded in the Glocks that officers had been using for the past 12 years.
    Also, Jankura thanked Morgan for meeting with a board member of the Woods of Glencairn area regarding traffic enforcement.
  • Gilmore talked about the fire department’s increase in the maximum number of members from 30 to 40. She said that did not mean the department was hiring 10 new members.
  • Pinney said the Board of Zoning Appeals will meet Aug. 19 at 7 p.m. with four cases on the agenda. The application deadline for the September meeting is Aug. 30.
    Pinney also noted the county issued an unsafe building order for the property at 3538 Medina Line Road. The owner will have the chance to make corrections, she said.
  • Wyatt reported he talked with operating engineer Fred Woods about the idea of a permeable parking lot for Richfield Woods Park. The idea would be cost-prohibitive, Wyatt said, because it would take 500 tons of heavy materials at $11 per ton.
    “He told me that we are 80 percent home with what we currently have there,” Wyatt said. “We just have to repair the soft spots and then chip and seal next year.”
    Wyatt also reported the Northeast Ohio Amateur Soccer Association will rent the park from Aug. 9 to Oct. 31. They will play on Sundays from 9 a.m. to noon and on Fridays from 5 to 8:30 p.m.
  • The trustees voted to approve the expenditure of $1,800 for Al Diligente to repair a section of road on Robert Burns Drive. Bowmer said the job was too big for the township road crew to handle.
  • Bowmer also said the Akron Zoo will offer free admission to Richfield residents for the week of Sept. 8-12. Tickets are available in the township office.

The next Richfield trustees’ meeting is scheduled for Aug. 22 at 6:30 p.m. at the township offices located behind the fire station on West Streetsboro Road.

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