Visit With Tim Dillon – Building in Seldovia – Part I

| November 26, 2013 | 0 Comments

by Jenny Chissus

Foundation poured, and getting covered to cure.

Foundation poured, and getting covered to cure.

The late arrival of winter to Seldovia has truly helped out a few projects going on about town!  The first one we’d like to discuss is the long-awaited start to the pavilion along the waterfront!  If you had a chance to notice, the construction of the new pavilion has begun!  Fortunately, the weather held out and the cement pour for the foundation was completed before the freeze and snow!

Tim Dillon – Dillon & Dillon – took a few minutes to give us a brief update on the history and progress of our new pavilion – and it is truly VERY exciting!  This is going to be such a welcome addition to our Seldovia infrastructure!  Thanks Tim for taking the time to answer a few questions!

PLEASE NOTE:  Meeting at the SOCC Tomorrow at NOON to discuss Seldovia signage – more about that below…

Gazette:  Tim, the pavilion has been an idea for many years.  Can you give us a brief history about how the project came about and how you became involved?

Tim: The Glovers initiated the concept of a gateway pavilion many years ago. The concept was to construct a building that would be the entrance, gateway, into ourcommunity for visitors. Seven years ago the Glovers asked for my involvement, soon thereafter they moved away from Seldovia. I spear-headed the effort over the last years writing and submitting a grant to the National Scenic Byways program. The grant was awarded a year and a half ago. Since then I have been working on planning and environmental assessments with the Federal and State DOT.

Gazette: You took the bull by the horns, and applied for the grant that will employ the folks to build the pavilion, will those funds cover all materials as well?  The grant included the building of the pavilion, the repair to the railings on the historic boardwalk and signage around town – was there anything else that will be completed with those funds?

Tim: The grant provides funding for material and labor to complete the pavilion, boardwalk railing repairs and signage. I am working to make those three tasks a reality and within the budget given. The grant also includes a separate barbecue area next to the pavilion. I am doing my best to keep this in the budget as I think it is something the entire community would use. It’s amazing how costly it is to build in this day and age, so it is going to take a concerted effort by everyone involved to get the barbecue enclosure built within the budget.

Gazette: You are donating your personal time and expertise to create the joinery for all the structural beams out in your shop.  Can you tell us more about what you are doing, and can folks come out and see your progress or help?

Tim: The grant was awarded to the people of Seldovia through a grassroots organization I started. The people of Seldovia made this grant happen and should be proud of their success. We needed an official organization to administer billing etc so I put the city of Seldovia in contact with the granting agency. The city has opened a force account and hired a few laborers and carpenters. It was never my intent to make a dime on this grant. All of my time is volunteer: I’m holding public meetings, designing the pavilion, estimating, ordering & expediting materials and signs, constructing the timber frame as well as overseeing and providing tools to the job for free. Cassidy is a great help down at the city office in accounting, submitting bills to the DOT and writing checks to the people who have been hired as laborers and carpenters. The building is going to be a timber frame and I will be working on those timbers in my shop all winter. I am honored that the community has allowed me to do this.

Gazette: Where does the material come from, will it be local spruce?

Tim: One of the key aspects that I wrote into the grant was that we would use timbers from our local forest. This forest is composed of Sitka Spruce and it is the farthest North this species grows on the planet. We will have interpretive/informational signage in the pavilion that describes our great forest and its great wood. Randy & Mary Bond will be providing quality timbers through their Seldovia Lumber & Supply business.

Gazette: Do you have a graphic of the final design of the pavilion that you can share with everyone?

Drawing of front elevation of the new pavilion facing Main Street

Front elevation of the new pavilion facing Main Street

Tim:  Here is a drawing of the front elevation – facing Main Street.

Gazette: What has been completed thus far?  What is the time frame for the construction of the pavilion?

Tim:  I have completed the design and plans for the timber frame, and earlier this fall we poured the concrete foundation at the harbor waterfront. Material estimating is complete and the timber list has been submitted to Seldovia Lumber & Supply. I hope to start working on timbers very soon. The railing should be completed over the winter.

Gazette: You mentioned that on Memorial Day Weekend you will have the ribbon cutting/grand opening of the pavilion during the Human Powered Fishing Derby.  Will the pavilion be “open” for all to visit and use at that time?

Tim:  If the best laid plans of mice and men come to fruition the grand opening for the pavilion will be on Memorial Day weekend and it will be open for use to everyone and anyone at that time.

Gazette: How do you see the pavilion being used for the benefit of Seldovians and visitors?

Tim:  First and foremost this pavilion is of the people, by the people and for the people of Seldovia. I envision it as a place to come together as a community and celebrate. It will be a wonderful place to barbecue and hold family and community picnics. Of course it will be the gateway to our community for visitors as well. I foresee every visitor coming into the harbor using this facility as a place to gather information and to relax, get out of the weather and meet locals.

Gazette: Signage was also part of the grant, and you have a meeting coming up this Wednesday at the Sea Otter Community Center at noon to discuss the signage that will be created to go up around town, the trails and also in the pavilion.   What are you hoping to hear from folks at this meeting, how can they prepare, and how can folks help with this process?

Tim:  My grant proposal was somewhat specific about signage at the Otterbahn and Rocky Ridge Trails as well as in the pavilion. I have those areas covered fairly well. What I want the community to bring to the table are suggestions for directional signage throughout town as well as any other signs that people think may be needed throughout the streets of Seldovia.

Gazette:  Anything else you would like to say about this project?

Tim:  Thank you to the people of Seldovia for making this happen.

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