TOWN OF HAMMOND, N.Y. (WWNY) - If you stand before one of the town justices in Hammond, you’ll do it in their office. If you want a jury trial, it’s done in the library. Codes, assessor and planning offices are all housed in one room.
“Right now it’s pretty cramped in the present building...and we’re also not handicap compliant with all our offices,” said Ron Bertram, Hammond town supervisor.
The town board is looking at building a new town hall at Route 37 and St. Lawrence Avenue. There’s hope a new building could encourage others to take a look at building or renovating there. The library in the town hall would also make the move.
“It will maybe revitalize it and bring new patrons in. The younger generation will be curious,” said Sherrie Moquin, Hammond Free Library librarian.
A new town hall and a new library are only half the story. The other part is what would be done with the old town hall. The idea is to restore the theater inside to its previous glory.
From 1915 to about 1950, most of town hall was occupied by a theater and stage. Renovating it would take some vigorous fund raising. Planning may start next year.
“It’s worked well in other communities and I think it could work here as well,” said Bertram.
The town recently landed a $100,000 federal grant and the right to borrow more at low interest for the new town hall.
The town board is looking to hire an engineer for the project.