Andover Townsman, Andover, MA


November 21, 2013

Youth center gets long-awaited green light

Check passing clears way for Dec. 1 project start


Over the years, the sources of funding shifted so that it is now a true “private-public partnership,” selectmen Chairman Alex Vispoli said.

“This is a project that was started before I got on the board,” Vispoli said. “This really shows the commitment of Bill Fahey. It’s a testament to him.”

Vispoli said the facility, while will be called the Cormier Youth Center after lead donor Ivan Cormier, will be available to everyone in the community, from young children to elderly citizens.

“The group (pushing for the teen center) stayed together and was given overwhelming support at Town Meeting, which shows the community really supports a facility like this,” Vispoli said.

More recently, the teen center has faced a number of smaller hurdles, including a problem with the original low bidder, G&R Construction of Quincy, which had to pull out because of a clerical error.

Going with the second low bid required the town and Youth Foundation to alter their agreement to reduce the contingency coverage in place should something go wrong with construction from 10 to 5 percent.

Even with the reduced contingency, there was still not enough money available, so the Youth Foundation went back to some of its donors for more cash.

The Waldo Trust Foundation made a $12,000 donation, and additional donations have come in from the Rogers Foundation as well as other, private donors.

Costagliola said fundraising will continue so that the building will include all of the original bells and whistles, some of which have had to be sacrificed along the way to allow the project to proceed.

A casino night is planned for Dec. 6 and proceeds from the Youth Foundation’s annual Christmas tree lot will also go toward the teen center.

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