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Church May Donate Elevator for Onatru Renovation

LEWISBORO, N.Y. — The Onatru Farmhouse renovation project may have gotten a boost when project managers revealed last week that a local church is willing to donate an elevator to the town if the elevator fits the plan’s specs.

The town is renovating the Onatru Farmhouse town offices in order to make the building ADA compliant. Work is scheduled to begin May 15.

Martin Diano, project manager and architect, told the Lewisboro Town Board that a church in Ossining would be willing to donate an elevator. The church recently underwent a makeover in which an elevator was installed. Two elevators were  donated, but the church only needed one and is now looking to get rid of the other.

The elevator portion of the renovations was originally estimated to cost about $80,000, so if the town can take advantage of a donated elevator, it could save substantially.

“It’s a new elevator but it may have some parts missing,” Diano told the board. “Plus, we have to check it out and see if it fits the shaft.”

Diano said he has 12 weeks to bring it on site once the contract is signed by the company that wins the bid. He also said he had to look into warranty and maintenance issues, noting he didn’t want the town to be held hostage to the installer’s service and maintenance contract, which could threaten to void any warranties.

In order to keep the project on schedule, the board said it would consider bidding out two fee schedules — one that includes an elevator and one that doesn't, in case the Ossining church elevator becomes a viable option.

“[The donation offer] is worth investigating and I would really like you to look into it,” Supervisor Peter Parsons told Diano. “The bids could reflect the subtracted cost of the elevator.”

The Onatru Farmhouse is home to the offices of the town assessor, building inspector, Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals and the Housing Committee. Parsons said those entities are expected to move into the new town offices behind DeCicco Family Market in Orchard Square in Cross River when the certificate of occupancy is issued.

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