The Pierson Town Council’s long-awaited move to the town’s new Town Center is still a work-in-progress, but work is being done to make the move.
“We are expeditiously working to complete our new Town Center,” Mayor Samuel G.S. Bennett told The Beacon.
While no time frame for the move is certain as of now, the town has hired local carpenter Eric Nelson with Tru Carpentry to fix up parts of the buildings, located at 116 W. First Ave.
“Just some cosmetic stuff,” Nelson said. “It’s in great shape, especially for the age of it.”
The buildings used to be a part of Pierson Elementary School. Nelson has been working to fix up parts of the campus, both inside and outside.
Some of the former Pierson Elementary School’s buildings were constructed in the 1930s, while some, including the main school building, were constructed in the 1980s. The town purchased the empty elementary school in 2019.
Work is underway, but there’s still a ways to go in fixing the building up, Town Council Member D. Gray Leonhard said during the council’s regular Feb. 22 meeting.
“I wouldn’t want to rent it to have a wedding reception for my family, let’s just say that,” Leonhard said. “There’s a lot of things in there that need cleaning up and painting.”
Progress in fixing up the future Town Center has been slow going at times, in part due to COVID-19-related delays.
“You can’t make this up. We ordered some lumber a year ago, and it came in last week,” Bennett told The Beacon. “That was to repair some of the wood structures where it had deteriorated, and some materials are readily available, and some you just have to wait.”
The mayor and the Town Council have big plans for the former elementary school’s nearly 6,000-square-foot main building once they move from their current location at 106 N. Center St., which they share with Surety Bank. With so many buildings and rooms on the campus — which sits on a parcel of land that totals around 6 acres in size — the town hopes to have space for the Volusia County Public Library and for the Volusia Sheriff’s Office to have offices.
At the town’s regular Town Council meeting March 8, Bennett said he had recently spoken with the Volusia County Public Library system, and that they were interested in the space, but that the move would take time.
As of March 8, the town has secured the insurance necessary to begin serious work on the interior and exterior of the future Town Center.
In previous discussions, Town Clerk Carmen Spelorzi even suggested potentially commissioning a mural of the town’s logo on the building.