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Hopedale - Local Town Pages

Town approves proposal for Town Park retaining wall evaluation and design

$80k engineering fee was previously approved by 

Town Meeting

By Theresa Knapp 

The Hopedale Select Board has engaged Tighe & Bond to provide engineering services related to the evaluation and design of replacement retaining walls at Town Park, where town officials say there have been “severe failures” with some of the retaining walls. 

The cost for the engineering phase is $80,000 which was previously approved by Town Meeting. 

According to the contract, “The stone retaining wall that is the subject of this proposal bounds the park on the northern, eastern, and southern sides. The western border of the park has a newer retaining wall that has been recently constructed and therefore, will not be part of this study. The Park currently slopes from an approximate elevation of 316-feet in the northeast corner of the site to an approximate elevation of 286-feet in the northwest corner.”

Parks Commissioner Mike Reynolds attended the meeting and said there are currently “significant safety concerns to the public when you talk about the areas that are compromised along Northrop and Freedom Street, specifically the Freedom Street side. Obviously, there’s a significant amount of degradation of that retaining wall, we have that sidewalk somewhat collapsing, and the railing is severely compromised so this was one that we felt needed to be a priority.” 

The engineering design is the final stage before construction can move forward. 

“This work entails all the engineering work and activities that have to take place prior to actually getting an overall cost of what it’s going to take to completely fix the situation,” said Reynolds. 

The cost of the “complete overhaul” of the retaining walls is estimated to be $800,000, according to Town Administrator Mitch Ruscitti. 

Select Board member Scott Savage said, “I do think this one is something we need to get done so that residents can feel comfortable that the next phase will be protected by what we’re doing here today.”