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North Huntingdon commissioners ponder Towne House facelift

Joe Napsha
| Friday, Aug. 12, 2016, 11:00 p.m.

North Huntingdon officials are considering a facelift for the 42-year-old Towne House, updating the building that contains the township offices and police department.

The commissioners Thursday discussed possible renovation projects with Ronald S. Gigler, an architect with RSSC Architecture of Wexford, who proposed $319,000 in exterior renovations and $155,000 in interior work. The commissioners said they would review the proposal before making any decision.

The proposed exterior renovations include refurbishing worn-out, faded shutters; cleaning the bricks; and replacing some of the fascia. Stairs to a side entrance to the building could be covered to provide some protection from inclement weather. A sidewalk could be installed along the side of the building adjacent to the parking lot, allowing for visitors to walk safely along the sidewalk rather than in the road, Gigler said.

The interior projects could include a lift to make the second floor of the building handicapped-accessible and updates to a first-floor bathroom in the rear of the building. That would cost about $125,000, Gigler said.

Commissioner Mike Faccenda said he would favor adding sliding doors to the main entrance to make it easier for handicapped persons or those using a walker to enter.

John Shepherd, township manager, said the township could apply for funding through the Americans with Disabilities Act for both projects.

Commissioners said they were not in favor of removing the existing pillars at the front entrance and extending a covered portico to allow for visitors to be dropped off in front of the building, affording them some protection from the weather. Gigler estimated it could cost about $250,000 to build the extended portico, which he said was part of the original design that was scrapped because of costs.

In addition to objections over the cost, Commissioner Richard Gray said he would be concerned about extending a portico that would abut the veterans memorial in front of the main entrance.

Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-5252 or

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