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June 10, 2014

Hampstead station may be done in August

Hampstead police station could be ready this summer

HAMPSTEAD — After winter weather caused some delays, the new police station is on track for completion in August.

The $1.63 million plan was approved at Town Meeting in 2013, the fifth time voters were asked to OK a new station.

Construction crews are working to finish the station by August. The 15-member department could move in September, police Chief Joseph Beaudoin said.

When finished, the station will have two cells, a holding area with room for 10, and a “status offenders room,” appropriate for juveniles, Beaudoin said.

“It’s quite a difference,” Beaudoin said, referring to the current station on Emerson Avenue. “We’d handcuff you to a pole in one of the rooms. That’s how it works right now.”

The station also includes a training room that can support about 25 people. The room can become an emergency operations center in case of a regional emergency, Beaudoin said.

The current station was built in 1948 and is about 2,500 square feet. The new station is nearly three times the size — 7,300 square feet spread out on one floor, Beaudoin said.

Ledge work was more significant than expected and put the project $200,000 in the hole before construction started. Officials are still trimming costs as a result, Beaudoin said.

“We’ve probably cut maybe $70,000 or $80,000,” he said.

Town officials meet with the contractor — Gary Chicoine Construction Corp. of Weare — every Wednesday for updates and options on the project.

“It’s fantastic,” said Paul Wentworth, the town’s clerk of the works. “The town hired this contractor because he’s willing to help us cut costs, but not quality.”

The cuts are all focused on cost-saving options like different kinds of materials. That way, the basic building is unchanged from what taxpayers signed up for, Beaudoin said.

There is a chance the gap won’t be closed by the end of the project, meaning some more money may be needed, Beaudoin said.

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