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Feb 20, 2003 to Feb 6, 2013

Brattleboro Police and Fire Preliminary Plans


Plans being presented tonight to the Brattleboro Selectboard for discussion.

Top image shows the expansion of the Municipal Center. The middle image shows expansion of the downtown central fire station on Elliot Street, and the final image shows the plan for the new West Brattleboro station.

All three will also be up for discussion at the Development Review Board meeting on February 19 at 7 pm.


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Here, and at the Selectboard, for sure

At the Selectboard mtg tonight, usually anyone can comment. They often ask where you are from.

Not sure about DRB mtg. I imagine it is similar, but they are bit more judicial and may have rules guiding them.

You can comment here, of course… it gets read.


My 2 cents

To my eye, the West B fire station is the nicest of all three designs, with the downtown central station coming in a close second.

Neither is spectacular, but they both have nice lines and angles to please the eye, while remaining functional and relatively inexpensive to build. They also look a bit like what they are, if that makes sense. They look like fire stations.

I found myself liking the idea of towers at the Central Station while hearing the presentation at the Selectboard mtg., and think they'll work well, design-wise, up against the back of the property. One of them will be about where the laundry entry used to be.

The police station should go back to the drawing boards. It's ugly and is going to destroy the shape of the Municipal Center, and adds nothing to a good looking (for the most part) downtown. Too boxy, and it will be heavy and imposing with all the brick. New building downtown may not need to look great, but it at least needs to look good.

After hearing about the towers for the fire station, it made me think that the police station should be on a much smaller footprint, and rise higher into the sky. It should be more like a tower than a sprawling complex.

I'd move it away from the Municipal Center a bit to give the older building room, perhaps adding an enclosed walkway between it and say, a five or six story police station.

Upper levels could take advantage of natural light, with large windows. It would give the facade some lift and airiness.

So, I'd like to see something a bit more like an airport control tower, and a bit less like a big box store. We're going to have to look at this for a long time. Add some style.



Does anyone else think that they should have at least tried to make a complimentary roofline on the police station? It looks like a big ol' barnacle just stuck on to the back and sides. There should be some relationship between the lines of the old building and the new. Even the windows and doors of the new should look like they belong together. Apparently whatever architect drew this up hasn't a clue how to do that. There are plenty of old buildings around the world that have nice looking modern additions that work well with the old structure.


That's what I was going to say ...

... but as a voter in a different town, felt a bit awkward, but it was the police addition that kinda caused me to gasp. I do spend a bit of time in Brattleboro, have produced probably 300 concerts & a few plays in B., ran a music store on Main St for 6 yrs, &c, so I had the urge to say how bad-looking the addition to the Muni Ctr is. I realize contemporary architecture, at least in public & municipal buildings, has some kind of bizarre mission to do everything in box shapes, but in this instance I would hope the Town Meeting Reps would agitate a bit for either a plan that removes the building from the site entirely, or at least makes some gesture to have a design which in even modest ways complements this, one of Brattleboro's distinctive buildings.

While I have followed the police/fire process in the media, I realized when I saw the drawings that it hadn't been clear to me that the police thingie was going to be tacked onto the Muni Ctr. I guess I was remembering an earlier proposal to locate it up by Exit 2 or someplace, & that probably got squashed by budget considerations & I hadn't noticed.

I do hope you folks will ask the designers or whomever to give it another try.



If we can't have a tower, I'd second this idea of doing something with the roofline to compliment the existing building, and working to integrate the two designs better.

If you read the Selectboard notes on the project, you can see that this site is causing them lots of headaches, so this design accommodates many things, but as you say, looks just stuck on.



Truly underwhelming! Do we have no pride in our civic image? And these mediocre (too kind a word) structures will cost us how much? Is this truly the best our community can do?

--Monroe Whitaker


Not as sympathetic to

Not as sympathetic to original architecture as it could be, maybe separate buildings somehow.


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