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Wilton Debates Scope of Miller-Driscoll Repairs

WILTON, Conn. – For Miller-Driscoll School to get the go-ahead for what is described as a long-awaited maintenance project, the cost needs to be reduced, a Wilton official told the Board of Selectmen on Monday night.

The “very delayed maintenance” for the kindergarten through Grade 2 school could cost Wilton about $40 million, according to Malcolm Whyte, chair of the town's Council of Public Facilities.

However, Whyte took issue with the plan. He said that half of the statement of requirements, a document that defines to architects and engineers what the required final result should be, wasn’t well planned and needed strong revision.

The part that needs revision, he said, was the part about maintenance for the school, rather than the part on the addition of a preschool at the building. “There is no vision written here about this part of the project. One can only read between the lines. It’s essentially saying, replace what’s there,” Whyte said.

Whyte said the school needs maintenance work and said the short-term plan should be to patch what was absolutely necessary, such as leaking roofs. He said that the last significant update at the school was made about 15 years ago.

The Board of Education should identify the priority maintenance needs and add those into this year’s budget, Whyte recommended.

Selectman Hal Clark said that an outside party would need to verify the priorities if the $40 million project was more of a “wish list rather than a needs list."

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