To the Editor:

It is with great interest that I read last week’s article on the possible moving of the town office to the Ethel Bisbee School lot. I am strongly opposed to this idea and am suggesting that the town officials study the options of making the Cole Block fit to be a voter and town meeting site.

A previous town manager explored some of the code barriers and was given indications that progress could be negotiated to make it possible and legal for public use. The Cole Block is well-situated with lots of parking on streets and nearby parking lots. Also to be considered is the office space on the second floor which could be used if it met code. The Cole Block has been well maintained by the Town of Bethel and should endure for generations.

The Cole Block, built in 1891, is on the National Register of Historic Places and has been one  of Bethel’s most famous landmarks in the town and one of its most historic.  Ideally, the town offices should always be  on a  town’s sprincipal street or avenue. Moving the town offices to Philbrook Street will be step backward and may be more expensive than bringing the Cole Block up to code.

Stan Howe

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