Linden council discusses repairs

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Linden City Council discussed improvements for work and play facilities Tuesday at their final February meeting.

The largest of the improvements discussed were for city hall. Public Works Superintendent Terry Tyson said the time was drawing near to decide whether the current facility will be maintained or a new building constructed.

The city’s present headquarter’s Tyson said, was in need of serious renovations.

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“There is a lot that needs to be done,” Tyson said. “The building itself needs to be completely rewired. That is not going to be a cheap venture. In order to rewire it, you are going to basically have to gut the building.”

Whether they built a new building or remain in their current structure, Tyson said, action needed to be taken soon.

“I know enough about construction to know we are going to have to do something if we are going to stay here, or we need to really look at doing something else,” Tyson said. “It has gotten to the point that this is a situation that we need to address.”

If the council chose to build a new city hall, Tyson said, he would be willing to do whatever he was capable of to oversee construction and keep costs down. Tyson said if they chose to use a metal building, the cost could be held to a rough estimate of $300,000.

“Metal is stronger, it is cheaper and it is faster,” Tyson said. “There are a lot of positive things about it. That is just a thought.”

The building, Tyson said, would not look like an ordinary metal building.

An immediate decision about city hall was not reached Tuesday.

The other improvement to the city included repairs to the city’s tennis courts. Several citizens came before the council to discuss what they could do to help the city with repairs.

Linden citizen and tennis player Wynne Echols said the surface of the court was the only problem area.

“The lights that were put up are excellent,” Echols said. “It is basically just the surface that needs help. The fence is fine, but the base is going to be a problem.”

City Administrator Cheryl Hall said they have been in contact with engineers to inquire about the cost of making the courts playable.

“I have been getting some estimates from our engineering firm,” Hall said. “Based on the dimensions, they said it would cost in the range of $27,000 to $30,000. We are probably going to just have to gut it out and start all over.”

The city, Hall said, is currently seeking funds to help with tennis court repairs.

The council voted to obtain further information about what is needed from Goodwyn Mills and Cawood in preparation to go forth with plans to rebuild the courts.

In other business, the council discussed filling the seat of deceased councilman Howard Walters. Linden Mayor Pat Vice said there were candidates who had shown interest in the position, but asked to table the issue until he had an opportunity to speak with them.