SELECTMEN NEWS: Public Buildings Dept. Outlines Projects This Summer, Including School Improvements

WILMINGTON, MA — At last week’s Board of Selectmen Meeting, Public Buildings Superintendent George Hooper provided an update on the projects his team is working on this summer.

“When school closes, we don’t go on vacation,” began Hooper. “When school closes, that’s when we really ramp up… We have a 10-week window to get these projects done.”

“In each school, my team takes every piece of furniture out of every classroom and washes them. They wash the walls. They strip the floors and put new coats of wax on them. They clean the vents and air systems,” continued Hooper. “[My team] checks all the lighting fixtures and exit signs. They refinish all the gym floors. They test all the school’s life safety systems, including fire alarms, pull stations, strobes, fire extinguishers, and intrusion alarms…. They service the heating systems. They clean the kitchens, including exhaust fans and grease traps.”

Hooper listed several projects his team is working on this summer, including:

  • Adding pickle ball court lines to the Woburn Street School gym
  • Installing new air condition systems at the Boutwell Early Childhood Center
  • Installing a new air condition system at dispatch at the Public Safety Building
  • Starting the first phase of lighting retrofiting at the West Intermediate School (Hooper works with RMLD to obtain maximum rebates on these LED light fixtures.)
  • Using Middlesex House of Corrections inmates to paint the Wilmington Food Pantry, the Wilmington Veterans Services building, and the Carriage House at the Harnden Tavern
  • Going out to bid on a new boiler for the Wilmington Memorial Library (Hooper is waiting for the design completion and hopes to have the boiler installed before the heating system)
  • Changing light fixtures to LED lights at Palmer Park for the Pop Warner fields
  • Assisting the School Department and Recreation Department with their various summer programs, including summer school, sports clinics, CARES, Tiny Tots, and other recreation programs in each school

In response to a question from Selectman Kevin Caira, Hooper said that the Wilmington Senior Center recently received all new lighting fixtures and new refrigerator. Hooper is working with Director Terri Marciello to make additional upgrades to the center’s kitchen.

Hooper noted that his team continues to provide regular maintenance to Town Hall, the Public Safety Building, the Library, and other town buildings.  His department maintains Yentile Park’s concession stands and the bathhouse at Silver Lake. The Public Buildings Department also assists with the Police Association’s Beach Day and the town’s Fourth of July activities.

Selectmen and Town Manager Jeff Hull praised Hooper and his team for their hard work.

“It’s unbelievable amount of work your guys do on behalf of the town. They keep things operating and looking good,” Selectman Kevin Caira told Hooper.

“I give George and his staff a lot of credit… Kudos to George,” added Town Manager Jeff Hull. “An issue we need to look at going forward to is revisiting the town’s facility master plan. George was Chair of that Committee. We should plan to have a discussion about the plan and next steps in the fall with the School Committee and Finance Committee.”

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