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City to get new mechanic shop

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The current city of Portland Mechanic Shop has missing tiles in the ceiling and uncovered walls exposing the insulation. When the building was constructed no health and safety features were required. BONNIE FUSSELL

The construction of a new mechanic shop for the city of Portland was expected to be approved on second reading at the Aug. 7 meeting of the City of Portland Board of Mayor and Alderman.

The total cost of the building is $221,317 which includes items covered under the bidding process. The low bid for those items was $120,400 by Collins Construction with Tony Smith, project manager.

The original first reading approval was deferred, when the council questioned the high cost of a metal building. City officials did additional research and found that the bid price was reasonable for what was required for a government work place.

According to Planning and Codes Director Andrew Pieri, the new building will meet the laws and regulations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) which require that workplaces meet health and safety standards.

Some of the OSHA requirements include an eye wash station, shower facility, and an adequate ventilation system that regularly brings in fresh air.

The building will be 50 feet by 50 feet. There will be an additional office space 13 feet by 25 feet, which will also include a bathroom and storage space. The building will have two bay doors that are 14 feet high and 12 feet wide. The bays will fit all city vehicles. There will be a 16 feet by 50 feet lean-to on the left side of the building for trucks to park. For example, a loaded trash truck will be able to park in the lean-to area. The lean-to will have an opening with no garage door.

Public Works Director Thomas McCormick said, "The current state of the mechanic building has reached an age that it doesn't fit our needs. It is time to either put money into this building or replace it with one that meets our needs now and for the future."

According to mechanic Danny Ladd, larger vehicles must be worked on outside regardless of the temperatures during the summer and winter. McCormick added, "When Danny does an oil change in the current building, the lift that lifts the vehicles is put at an angle that makes it very difficult to get a full size truck in and out."

The new building would be designed to accommodate every piece of equipment the city has. It will be a commercial type building made of steel. The building will be wind-rated to withstand a certain wind force and snow-rated to handle a certain snow weight. Money for the facility will come from the General Obligation Bond Series 2015.

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