, Derry, New Hampshire


February 20, 2014

Editorial: Polish that gem


The town has invested a lot in the Opera House — many times over.

The Adams building benefited from a major renovation in 2000 — new heating and air conditioning systems, an elevator, sprinklers and new restrooms, at a cost of $1.5 million.

The building, on the National Register of Historical Places since 1982, also houses the Greater Derry Londonderry Chamber of Commerce, the Derry Housing Authority and the town museum.

Public works director Mike Fowler was scheduled to address the Town Council this week on $150,000 in proposed renovations. A public hearing will be held early next month.

The town has about $20,000 in the budget and the remaining $130,000 could be drawn from a capital reserve fund, according to Fowler, so taxpayers wouldn’t feel any direct impact. The plan calls for the work to be done in August.

In January 1914, a devastating fire all but destroyed the building. On Feb. 7, 1914, residents voter to spend the money and rebuild.

The Town Council and residents should follow suit and fund needed repairs now.

The building ought to be regarded as the gem it is. All it needs is a little polishing, including a reinvigorated publicity campaign to let residents and those from surrounding communities know all that it has to offer.

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