FARMINGTON — Franklin Savings Bank seeks to connect Front and Main streets with a stairway. Officials are scheduled to bring the idea to Board of Selectmen Tuesday night.

“We will build a stairway and throw in 12 parking spaces in exchange for the town having ongoing responsibility and liability for the stairway,” bank President Peter Judkins said Monday.

The proposed site on Front Street is on the north end of the bank’s property, up from Western Mountains Financial Services, where the original Butler building was previously razed.

There’s a deep section there where 12 cars could park, and bank officials propose paying for a covered stairway up to businesses on Main Street, he said.

It would be a two-tier stairway with a set going from the Front Street lot up to the parking space behind Dunkin’ Donuts and another section from there up to the parking lot behind Franklin Savings. The proposed public parking space would be next to My Crop, Paper, Scissor Store.

The proposal includes the town assuming maintenance responsibility and liability and probably includes replacing the stairs as needed, Town Manager Richard Davis said.

“The bank would own the lot, but the town would have some sort of long-term agreement for the use of the 12 spaces in exchange for the responsibility for the stairs. Also, the bank requests that it not be taxed for the lot or the stairs,” he answered in an e-mail.

The bank has secured an architectural drawing but has not contracted the work yet, so Judkins wasn’t sure what material would be used for the steps.

“It will be good for the town and connect the two streets,” Judkins said.

The proposed lot is across from another Front Street lot on which the town entered into a 99-year lease for $1 a year in 1993. Recently, the board opted to give up the stake in the lot owned by Greg Roux.

Since then, attorney Paul Mills started a petition and will present it to the board Tuesday night. 

The petition requests a town meeting to ask voters to direct selectmen to amend the Front Street parking lease by increasing payments to the lot owner and making changes to keep the 99-year lease in tact, Mills said previously.

The board will review the petition and make a decision about placing it on the March town meeting warrant.

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