Update from the Property Committee

Dear friends,
It’s been too long since the property committee provided an update on major projects. While there hasn’t been visible construction activity, we have been very busy with a host of projects.  By March of last year we had completed the plans for the sewer connection and were finalizing an easement with our neighbors to allow us to connect to the sewer. Just about the time we were ready to submit for permits, COVID-19 brought things to a grinding halt. The city stopped all non-essential construction and permits moved to a fully digital process which did not go smoothly. Those events have extended our schedule considerably.

During that time, however, we have been hard at work on documentation for the remainder of the projects that we identified during the capital campaign. We were on track to accomplish that work within the funds raised as long as we didn’t run into too many unexpected conditions and pledges continued to be honored. Of course since it was 2020 – the year of I-didn’t-see-that-coming – we ran into a number of significant unforeseen issues which required us to reorder our priorities.

The biggest driver behind re-ordered priorities is a requirement for a new electrical service. From the records it appears that we haven’t had any significant upgrade to electrical infra-structure since the 1950s, living all the while in a world increasingly dependent on technology and power. PECO will install a new 1,000-amp service which should clean up a number of problems and see us for some time into the future.

The chart below summarizes the new order of projects and associated costs. Items above the bold line have been approved by the vestry for implementation. Items noted in red (approximately $480,000) are items new to the list since the campaign was completed.
I know that it is disappointing and frustrating to not immediately be able to complete the kitchen renovation, sanctuary improvements, etc. However, we will have invested in the safety and security of the campus that will allow us to complete the other projects with confidence that our infra-structure can adequately support our needs into the future. The property committee, vestry, and finance committee are working to develop long-term strategies to fund ongoing maintenance and projects such as these that will enhance and increase the value of St. Paul’s physical assets.

The good news is that we now have all permits in place and work will begin this month. We will soon start to see work on the sewer, site lighting, and on the education wing roof. Other projects will follow. The property committee will provide periodic progress updates.

Thanks to all those who have fulfilled their pledges to the campaign and those who continue contributing. Please contact me or any member of the property committee with questions, comments, or concerns.

Mark Duckett

Property Committee:   Tim Albert, Pam Bracey, Joe Fafara, John Faggoti, John Grigger, Alix Jones, Barbie Kimberly, Mike Latini, George McNeely, Ned Smith, John Zimmerman

More information will be forthcoming at our all parish Town Hall Meeting on St. Paul’s Day, 24th January at 10 a.m., following the Sunday morning service. Mark and the Vestry will share more of the plans related to the rector search and what is going to happen short and long term on these property issues. Please plan to attend our Zoom meeting on our virtual patronal festival.