WESTFIELD, NJ – After 33 years at the Westfield Train Station kiosk, Murray Perch celebrated his “last stand” as the Sunnyside News provider.
That was in 2016.
Since then, the kiosk at the train station has remained boarded up, something set to change following the Town Council’s approval this week of monies to renovate the kiosk. Who will become the next operator remains to be determined, but municipal officials are optimistic.
“It’s very exciting because we’ve had a lot of interest,” said Town Administrator Jim Gildea. “There are a lot of local folks interested.”
Once the renovations of the kiosk are complete, Gildea said told the Town Council, the municipality will issue a request for proposals for a vendor, something he anticipates happening in the fall.
Having lain vacant for the past two years, the approximately century-old structure is in disrepair. “When we were out there on the pre-bid visit, there was a lot of rotting wood and a lot of features that needed repair,” said Chris McAloon, the town engineer.
The council approved the award of a $92,250 contract to K&D Contractors LLC, of Kenilworth, for the project, choosing from one of two bidders who submitted proposals.
In addition to replacing the rotting wood, the work will entail installing electrical wiring and a sink with running water, McAloon said.
The kiosk, also called a “coffee hut,” had been built in the early 1900s, and following the departure of Sunnyside News, municipal officials had surveyed the public on best uses for the structure.
Email Staff Writer Matt Kadosh at firstname.lastname@example.org; Follow him on Twitter: @MattKadosh