Vergennes to evaluate new parcel

VERGENNES — Vergennes aldermen on Tuesday took a step toward determining the value of the 8-acre parcel that the Vergennes ID school board earlier this year deeded to the city — aldermen agreed to fund a topographical survey of the tract off New Haven Road.
The land, which also abuts school property and the city recreation property the ID board also deeded to Vergennes, runs behind homes on the east side of New Haven Road and slopes downward to the rear.
The board of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Vergennes has said it would like to buy an option on part of the land for a potential clubhouse site. Aldermen are interested in selling some of the land, and have also said they want some of the parcel to remain open for outdoor recreation, including hiking.
City Manager Mel Hawley recommended to aldermen on Tuesday that because of the land’s sloping nature they should learn more about the property from a topographical survey before they take any further steps.
“We don’t know if we have one acre of developable land or five acres of developable land,” Hawley said.
Hawley guessed such a survey could cost up to $2,000. Aldermen agreed with his suggestion that they tap the city’s Watershed Fund to pay for the survey. That fund is dedicated to recreation, Hawley said, and some of the land will be dedicated to recreation.
“Certainly a portion of the land will always be used for recreation,” he said.
Hawley also told aldermen that the Boys & Girls Club board has met twice in the past month, at least in part to discuss the parcel. Board representatives will sit down on Aug. 24 with a city council subcommittee — Aldermen Lowell Bertrand and David Austin, plus Hawley — to talk about the land.
Reporter Andy Kirkaldy is at [email protected].

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