West Tisbury Library moisture and fungus damage fixes under exploration


Representatives from Nauset Construction and the architecture firm Oudens Ello met with West Tisbury officials in early August at the West Tisbury Library to discuss a moisture problem that triggered a mushroom infestation in a bumpout portion on the back of the library, town administrator Jennifer Rand told selectmen last week.

Ms. Rand said the meeting was positive, and that the architect and the builder were willing to investigate what caused the moisture and how to repair it.

Selectman Kent Healy, who attended the library meeting with Nauset and Oudens Ello, said it was unclear who would pay for the work, and when it would be executed. Because of its size and capability, Ms. Rand said, she felt optimistic about Nauset solving the problem without assistance.

“I’m hopeful they’re just going to hammer it out and be done with it,” she said.

A bay window problem or a weak point in a wall or roof may be the root of the problem, Conrad Ello, a principal at Oudens Ello, told The Times. But the source of the moisture has yet to be verified, he said. He said the moisture intrusion was a localized problem of a type that can arise from time to time in buildings as complex as the West Tisbury Library, but added that “nobody feels good about it” because the building is only three years old. His firm was working with the contractor and the town to arrive at solutions to the problem, he said, but added that they are not at the point of talking money yet. He also said the cause might never be known because damaged construction materials removed from the bumpout that could have offered clues have been disposed of by the town.

A representative at Nauset Construction told The Times that the person authorized to comment on the West Tisbury library was on vacation and could not be reached.