The first of two buildings comprising the Town’s new Welcome Center at the beach opened on Friday, May 27, in time for the Memorial Day weekend. This was the public restroom facility in the corner of the Town’s large beach parking lot. The second building, on the western of the Broadway Mall is expected to open in mid-June, prior to the endo of the school year. This facility will encompass public restrooms as well, but will also include a tourist and public information center, changing stations for small children, and a large seating area facing the ocean and the summertime outdoor concert area. Both buildings will be staffed sever days a week from early in the morning until 10:00 or 11:00 at night (after concerts and fireworks). The former comfort station is slated to be sold by the Town in conjunction with the former police station property.
The Town completed the resurfacing of Pike Street, Collins Street and Blacksnake Road prior to the Memorial Day weekend. The first two streets, in particular, were in difficult shape, and since they comprise one of the main entrances and exits from Rte. 286, it was critical that the work be completed before the summer season. Three additional streets will be repaved in the Fall – Longmeadow Drive, Glenwood Avenue, and a major portion of Ferry Road.
Town Takeover of Water System
In the planning stages for over a year, the Town’s takeover of the operation and maintenance of our water supply and distribution system, along with the responsibility for billing, is expected to take place on July 1, 2022. One of the first changes that will be implemented will be a quarterly billing system for water. For many years, water billing has been done on a monthly basis for more than 3,000 customers in town. However, after July 1, all except about 275 water customers will see their water and sewer bills combined and billed only four (4) times a year. For the remaining 275 customers, where the water bill and sewer bill for the same address are currently sent to two different people or entities, that practice will continue, although there will still be only be four water and four sewer bills per year after July 1. The Town is in the midst of hiring staff and creating a new Water Division within the DPW, transitioning away from an expiring contract with Pennichuck Water Services Co., which has managed the Town’s water resources for the past 20 years. There will be an adjustment period, but the Town is confident that we will be able to run and manage our water system efficiently and in a cost-effective manner going forward.