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Jaffrey Civic Center reaches fundraising goal for hydraulic lift

  • The Jaffrey Civic Center has reached its fundraising goal of $80,000 to purchase a new lift, allowing everyone a chance to get to the second floor of the building. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • The Jaffrey Civic Center has reached its fundraising goal of $80,000 to purchase a new lift, allowing everyone a chance to get to the second floor of the building. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • The Jaffrey Civic Center has reached its fundraising goal of $80,000 to purchase a new lift, allowing everyone a chance to get to the second floor of the building. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • The Jaffrey Civic Center has reached its fundraising goal of $80,000 to purchase a new lift, allowing everyone a chance to get to the second floor of the building. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—



Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Wednesday, September 05, 2018 3:53PM

The Jaffrey Civic Center has successfully raised $80,000 to purchase and install a two-person hydraulic lift so everyone can access the building’s second floor. 

The Civic Center is currently gathering quotes from contractors to complete the project, Executive Director Regina Vorce said Tuesday. The goal is to have the lift installed by early 2019. 

“Not being able to provide access for everyone impacts our mission,” Vorce said. “It’s exciting, I feel like we are able to make a difference with this project.”

The thought of improving access to the second floor has been on the minds of Civic Center board members for at least eight years, Vorce said, but the concept long laid dormant due to $250,000 price estimate that came with installing a full elevator in the building.

“People fled the issue, it was a little daunting,” Vorce said. “… we would’ve had to rewire the entire building.”

The Civic Center holds a number of events on the second floor of the building, including art shows, art openings, and art classes. There is a three-room art gallery and an art studio on the second floor. 

Currently, there is ramp access to the first floor of the building, but no option for those in wheelchairs and with other impairments to make it to the second floor. 

The board eventually revisited the issue and last year decided to to move forward with a less expensive hydraulic lift system.

“We reframed the problem into a more simple solution,” Vorce said. 

In about a year’s time, the center has raised all funds needed for the project between a mix of grants and donations from local businesses and citizens. 

“We’ve had a lot of support from the community,” Vorce said. “I think [Jaffrey Civic Center founder] Marion Mack Johnson would have supported this project. She wanted this place to be accessible by everyone.”

The lift is scheduled to be installed in the west side of the building, in an area that is now utilized for storage. The lift, which has adequate room for two people, will be located near the ramped entrance in the back of the building.

On the second floor, the lift will take up some space in one of the art gallery rooms. 

Nicholas Handy can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or nhandy@ledgertranscript.com. He is also on Twitter @nhandyMLT.