City to close Kennedy Park gazebo

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LEWISTON — City crews will pull the stairs away from the Kennedy Park gazebo and seal it up from public use Wednesday, after an engineering report declared the floor and the structure unsafe.

Deputy City Administrator Phil Nadeau said the report noted the structure is not in imminent danger of collapsing, but is not safe for public use.

“Structurally, it has deteriorated beyond the point where we want to take any chances,” Nadeau said. “Basically, the roof is the only part that is structurally sound.”

Nadeau said crews are scheduled to remove the pre-cast concrete stairs from the gazebo’s entrance and put them in storage. Then, they’ll close off the entrance and post signs.

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“We just don’t want kids climbing around on it, that’s all,”  Nadeau said.

The gazebo is at last 50 years old, according to the report by Shelley Engineering of Westbrook. It recommended removing the roof and demolishing the rest of the structure. A new structure could be built for the roof.

The city set aside money in 2007 for improvements at Kennedy Park and that included the gazebo. Councilors in 2009 froze that money. The city currently has no plans to renovate the gazebo.

But Nadeau said he is presenting the engineering report to the city’s Historic Preservation Review Committee on Thursday to discuss changes that can be made to the gazebo.

The structure is 22 feet wide and was used as a bandstand.

staylor@sunjournal.com

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