ISLESBORO — Town Administrator Janet Anderson told the Select Board Feb. 3 that she had heard from  2A Architects, the Rockport firm hired by the town to develop plans for a proposed new health center. She said Amanda Austin, the architect who has been working with the town, told her the firm had “serious reservations” about continuing to work on the project, because it does not have the necessary experience designing rural health centers.

According to Anderson, 2A staff felt “the learning curve would be too steep” to allow for timely completion of the project. The firm said it would not charge the town for work already done, and Anderson accepted the offer. She said she would talk to Austin Friday, Feb. 4, and would ask her to share any notes that could be useful to a new architect.

The board approved the termination of the contract and a letter from Anderson to 2A accepting its terms. Anderson mentioned that she had another architect in mind who has previously done work on Islesboro.

Speaking to The Republican Journal Feb. 4, Select Board member Lauren Bruce, who also heads the Public Health & Safety Committee, which is working on the health center project, said she felt the turn was “a good result,” because they had learned early in the process that their chosen architect was unable to complete the project, and 2A offered not to charge the town. She said the change might delay the project by about a month.

Once a new architect is hired, she said, the town will have a better idea of how much of the work done by 2A must be redone.

She also mentioned that she expects in about two weeks to launch a website for the project, which includes not only developing a new health center, but also renovating the existing clinic into expanded quarters for the Public Safety, Fire and EMS departments.

The Public Health & Safety Building Committee’s next meeting has not been set.

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