Some municipal offices for the consolidated Princeton will likely be moved to their new locations starting in mid September.
“We’d like to have everyone in their final offices by mid November at the latest so that we are up and running and transitioned as much as we can be by January 1,” Administrator Bob Bruschi told the Princeton Borough Council Tuesday night. “This excludes the police. We will need every ounce of time to get that building ready, because we are basically doubling the employee population. The rest of the offices appear to fit fairly nicely in the existing space and require furniture shifting and very small physical changes.”
Princeton Borough and Princeton Township hired KSS Architects to determine the best use of facilities as the two municipalities prepare to consolidate. In phase one of the project, which cost $27,500, KSS evaluated the existing space in Borough and Township municipal buildings and determined whether all the employees could be fit into the existing facilities. The Borough and Township approved a second contract with KSS for $38,000 for phase two, which entails looking at the physical changes that need to be made inside the buildings, including furniture needs, as municipal departments are reorganized. Phase three will include construction drawings, Bruschi said.
The most significant changes will be to the police department space and the administrator and clerk’s office at the Township municipal building.
“Preliminary indications are that most of what we need is just furniture changes like moving work stations around and reshuffling desks,” Bruschi said. “It’s like rearranging a long line of dominoes. We don’t know yet how all the dominoes will line up, or who will go first. We should have more worked out next week.”
Bruschi said he is eager for the process to get started next month so the moves are not rushed or squeezed together.
“The most important thing is to get people moving, both logistically and from an employee morale standpoint,” he said. Departments like affordable housing, zoning and historic preservation could be among the first to be moved.
Princeton Borough Captain Nick Sutter and Frank Rodgers from the Rogers Group also gave the council an update on the unification of the Borough and Township police departments. The Rodgers group is being paid $43,000 as a consultant on the police merger.
The policies and procedures for the two departments are being merged and updated to meet national and state standards. “It’s a very important document,” Sutter said of the police policies and procedures.”It’s the foundation of department operations.”