Rec Center expansion approved by review board

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BENNINGTON — The town's Development Review Board approved plans Tuesday for a 13,500-square-foot, $3.7 million renovation and expansion of the Bennington Recreation Center.

Betsy Rathbun-Gunn, director of Early Childhood Services at United Counseling Service, which is involved in the effort, said the project team expects to meet Friday to review contractor bids. The project is also awaiting a final code review by the town, she said.

The federally funded project includes new space for early childhood programming and services, multipurpose community spaces and a new entrance with a lobby and elevator. It also includes the creation of 25 parking spaces and the installation of a sprinkler system throughout the building.

Construction work hours will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, Jack Byer of Goldstone Architecture told the DRB Tuesday night, according to CAT-TV footage. The work, overseen by Bread Loaf Corporation, of Middlebury, is expected to last about one year.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the project is scheduled for Oct. 16. at 1:30 p.m. Gov. Phil Scott is expected to be among the state and local dignitaries in attendance.

An envisioned future phase of the project, which has yet to be funded or permitted, would include a gymnasium and additional program space.

Contact Luke Nathan at lnathan@benningtonbanner.com.

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