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Committee to move forward with proposed Community Center

PUBLISHED: | UPDATED:

Correspondent

GROTON — The Board of Selectmen has voted unanimously to establish a Community Center Committee to explore potential locations for an intergenerational community center.

The idea for the group emerged from efforts by the Groton Community Foundation to take the pulse of residents on whether they want an intergenerational community center to replace the town’s Senior Center.

The new committee, to be made up of a cross section of community members, will be charged with obtaining residents’ support and finding the best place to build a center.

Support was thrown into doubt last year after selectmen questioned the value of a survey that too few residents had participated in.

At the time, the Groton Community Foundation agreed with the opinion and promised to conduct a second, more thorough survey as the first order of business if a Community Center Committee was established.

Questions were raised again during the Jan. 16 selectmen’s meeting when Selectman Mihran Keoseian raised concerns with proposed language in the committee’s charge that suggests one of its responsibilities be to consider locations for the center other than the somewhat controversial use of the Groton Country Club.

Admitting that the foundation’s sights have been firmly fixed on the Country Club and that the group proposed to spend its own money to pay for a feasibility study for the site, foundation member Steven Webber didn’t rule out considering other locations.

“We want to do something for every man, woman and child in Groton,” said foundation member Frank Belitsky.

With the understanding that a new survey will be among the group’s first items of business and the Country Club is to be considered only as a “potential” site, board members voted 5-0 to create the committee and give it its charge.

A vote to appoint the committee’s 10 members is expected to be taken at the board’s Jan. 22 meeting when members representing the school district, selectmen, Council on Aging, Groton Community Foundation and residents-at-large will be named.

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