Shoreham building won’t host childcare

SHOREHAM — Town officials in Shoreham have decided to at least table discussion of installing a childcare facility in the former “conservatory” building on School Street.
It was several years ago that Charles Callahan donated the conservatory — formerly a Masonic hall — to the community. The Shoreham selectboard formed a committee to assess the building’s repair needs and consider potential municipal uses for it. The town has made some basic repairs to the structure in recent years, updating the interior lighting and making it handicapped accessible. But it still needs a working restroom.
A childcare provider recently approached the selectboard with the idea of establishing a business in the conservatory to serve 40 to 50 children. Officials were intrigued by the pitch, as there are currently no major childcare centers operating in Shoreham, according to Selectwoman Karen Shackett.
But after studying the proposal, the selectboard determined it would be too expensive to make the necessary state-mandated repairs to allow the conservatory to be used for childcare. This would have required, among other things, the construction of a three-stall bathroom and a second downstairs exit in the building, according to Shackett.
“That building is perfect (for child care) but it will take a lot of money to do it,” she said.

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