Child and Family Agency of Southeastern CT
The Carriage House at our New London Child Guidance Clinic houses the administrative offices for our School Based Health Centers program, and is also licensed for mental health services and provides a handicapped accessible space for treating clients who cannot, due to physical limitations, navigate the steps required to get into the clinical building. With offices on the second floor the Carriage House requires a second and exterior means of egress in case of fire or emergency and that egress, in the form of a deck with stairs leading to the parking lot, was in grim condition. The treads kept breaking making them unsafe to walk on, and the risers were deteriorating leaving little material with structural integrity to attach new treads to. Metal components comprising the structural supports had begun to rust through and the structure was becoming unstable. It was a difficult project to build to code due to the parking lot directly off the building; with the funding received through OPM the Agency was able to hire a contractor who worked closely with the building officials and the fire marshal in the City of New London to replace the deteriorating structure with a safe fire and emergency egress that conforms to all current building codes. Now in the case of a fire or an emergency, second floor occupants have a safe second form of egress to evacuate the building.
The front building houses one of our Child Guidance Clinics. It is a three story Victorian built in 1910 and still had all original single pane glass windows. This presented multiple issues, the first being safety related. The windows were very large, thin single paned glass, easily broken due to their fragility. Given the clients we serve, replacing these windows with double paned, modern glass was necessary to keep our staff and clients safe. Secondly, the windows were draughty, making the building uncomfortable in severe temperatures, and inefficient to heat and cool. This Child Guidance Clinic is a very busy clinic seeing many children daily throughout the week, and the improvements realized by replacing the windows made a significant difference in the safety and comfort of our staff and those we serve, as well as positively impacting the Agency’s budget by reducing utility costs with energy efficient windows.