TOWNSEND — Just a few items remain on the punch list for construction work at the Townsend Recycling Center that was done by instructors at Nashoba Valley Technical High School. Representatives of the school met with the Townsend Board of Health on Monday to review progress on the job.
The Nashoba instructors anticipated the site would be ready for final inspections on Wednesday, June 16.
Jim Le’Cuyer, chairman of the Townsend Board of Health, said he would be satisfied with the work once it has passed inspections.
During a May 9 meeting, Le’Cuyer criticized the quality of work done by the school. He said he was disgusted with how he found the job site and with code violations he saw.
Le’Cuyer’s criticism in May of the work was premature, according to Paul Jussaume, vocational/co-op coordinator at the high school. The work was not yet completed and correcting mistakes is part of the learning process for the students.
Things had improved in the chairman’s eyes by mid-June. “I’m amazed at how much stuff has been accomplished since our last meeting. It sparked a growth,” Le’Cuyer told the educators.
Now the job is near completion. A crooked stack for a heater was straightened, blocking was installed in the bathroom so that handrails can be added, repairs were made to torn insulation, the plumbing is nearly ready and final installation of a door was done.
Le’Cuyer’s review of the school’s work did help uncover at least one other problem. A screw had been driven through a pipe. “It’s a good thing we opened it up,” carpentry instructor Roy Silva said. The pipe would have eventually leaked if the screw had gone undetected.
Plumbing instructor Robert Brazeau defended his decision to install a non-locking exterior faucet. “According to Mass. state plumbing code, that is perfectly legal in a commercial building. I was trying to stay within budget,” he said. “However, this is a $15 valve rather than $150.”
He did acknowledge the work area was not tidy. “This was very messy. You’re right. I didn’t have a job box out there,” he said.
As of the June 14 meeting, a donated sink was missing two lag screws, delaying the final installation. Brazeau said he is looking for an inexpensive way to get the needed hardware to finish the job in time for the inspection.
The finish work on the walls is not done. “Possibly some of the kids who worked there can do some of the drywall work this summer,” Jussaume said. Carla Walter, administrative assistant for the Townsend Board of Health, said the students have already agreed to do this.
Jussaume said the students could return in the fall to install items like lights once the finish work is complete.
As school representatives were leaving the meeting, Le’Cuyer told them that even if they did not know it, this experience was probably the best thing to happen to them professionally.
The teachers agreed it was a learning experience. “Our goal is to please the customer. We want you to be happy,” Brazeau said.
Not all jobs go perfectly, so this was a good instructional job for the students, Silva said.