This information was published in the Somers Congregational Church restoration news center on March 6, 2013:
Rev. Dr. Barry Cass
The Building Committee had not planned on Meeting this week, but it turned out there were things we needed to address. We have received word from our architects, Clohessy, Harris and Kaiser that Hugh Schweitzer, who has been the lead architect from the firm working with us for the past year, will be leaving them at the end of this week. Hugh has worked very closely with the Committee and has gotten to know the church, our needs, our wants and even our quirks very well. We all feel we could not have made the progress we have made without Hugh’s presence, guidance and caring this past year. He will be greatly missed.
One of the reasons we chose CHK as our architects a year ago was that the firm is big enough to have several qualified architects on their staff. Steve Hine will be working with us to complete the Meeting House project. Steve has been working with Hugh Schweitzer through the process and is very familiar with our project and well qualified to work with us directly. At this point the design work is 99% complete and all that remains is some tweaking of the design as the work progresses. The thrust now is about building the meeting house and Steve will be working with Petra Construction to be sure everything comes together as it should. Most of the bids for critical work have been received and contracts awarded, so we are in good shape and the Committee has full confidence in Steve and the work we will complete with him. He will begin meeting with the Committee next week.
The Insurance and Building Committees have received communication from Utica Insurance Company regarding issues raised at the January 21 meeting between the church and Insurance Company. We have been waiting for this response and it moves us closer to a settlement which we are expecting to be given in the very near future.
There has been an unexplained delay in the delivery of our steel, which was supposed to have arrived on March 6. Now we have been assured that there will be steel arriving on site March 9 or 10 and the crane and steel workers will arrive on site Monday, March 11. This means that the work is scheduled to begin on March 11. As the steel arrives it is removed from the trailers by the crane and put in place on the structure. The construction should take place fairly quickly with the framing of the church arising from foundation day by day.
Work to install electric lines from the pole in front of Bank of American to the transformer on the church site should also be done in the very near future. Although there seem to be delays on several fronts, the overall construction schedule has not been changed and we are moving ahead. The Building Committee feels fortunate to have the guidance of the team from Petra as issues arise. Their experience and knowledge in construction have helped us better understand what is going on and to relax about scheduling and other elements beyond our control.
We hope to be making final decisions about the extent of the audio visual equipment for the Meeting House next week, completing another important phase of the project.