N. Yarmouth residents urged to take advantage of daytime Wescustogo forum

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NORTH YARMOUTH — Residents who have been unable to attend evening meetings to learn about the Wescustogo Hall reconstruction project are encouraged to attend next week’s daytime gathering.

The community forum, hosted by Living Well in North Yarmouth Committee, will be held in the Town Office meeting room, 10 Village Square Road, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 17.

Those who need transportation can call committee member Ginny Van Dyke at 829-3848. More information is available at northyarmouth.org/wescustogo-building-and-design-committee, or by calling Living Well Chairman Steve Palmer, who can be reached at 829-6230 or 572-7151.

Representatives from the Wescustogo Building and Design Committee, which is guiding the reconstruction planning effort, will field questions and hear input.

“We’re trying to … reach out to those people in the community that were unable to attend, for whatever their reasons, an evening meeting,” Palmer said in an interview May 4, noting that lack of transportation or a need for childcare could have prevented some people from attending.

“Living Well North Yarmouth wanted to make sure that we were giving people in our community a chance to attend a day session,” he added, noting that the panel’s focus is to ensure the needs of all people in town are being met.

More information can be found at northyarmouth.org/living-well-north-yarmouth.

The Board of Selectmen voted in January to focus rebuilding efforts on the Route 9 site of the former North Yarmouth Memorial School – which School Administrative District 51 closed and transferred to the town in 2014 – as opposed to the Route 115 site where fire destroyed the original Wescustogo Hall in 2013.

Portland firm Barrett Made proposes to demolish the bulk of the 1976 school building, while the stage, gym, and kitchen area would be preserved and renovated as a community center. The new hall would be built just south of the building, connect to the center through a lobby, and face Route 9.

The Wescustogo group has maintained its projected cost ceiling – for both the new building and renovation of the remaining NYMS space that will adjoin it – at $3.5 million.

The committee is focused on engineering, fundraising and grants, Chairman Brian Sites said May 3. Details such as site work and building materials are being considered, and more information on the project’s eligibility for grants could be available in the weeks ahead.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

This rendering shows how a new Wescustogo Hall might appear from Route 9 in North Yarmouth.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.