Unloading City-Owned Property Proves Difficult for North Adams
North Adams has been eager to sell off a number of properties, ranging from a former elementary school to its defunct salt shed.
Buyers? Decidedly less motivated.
The Berkshire Eagle reports with the much-anticipated sale and redevelopment of the Windsor Mill off the table and a deal on the salt shed that seems likely to fall through, Mayor Thomas Bernard remains committed to getting a number of city-owned properties back on the tax rolls.
But looking forward, he plans to tweak the approach, pledging to push buyers to close on the deal sooner — reducing the odds that a deal falls through.
Bernard provided the Finance Committee with an update this week on the marketing efforts:
Tiny house builder B&B Micro Manufacturing submitted a $75,000 winning bid on the city's former salt shed on Ashland Street last year, proposing that it would use the building as a space to build platforms that would transport its tiny homes.
But since then, the company — currently operating out of the Windsor Mill on Union Street — has landed a deal on a new space on Howland Avenue in Adams.
Bernard expects the company to submit official notice that it will not close on the salt shed property in the coming weeks.
A proposal to renovate the former Notre Dame Church on East Main Street remains on the table.
The Square Office, a North Adams-based developer comprised of Dan Wallis and Emily Daunis, earned rights to the historic property — which includes a church and former school building — last year with a $253,000 bid.
The developer's proposal called for the property to be transformed into a 64-room hotel with a variety of amenities.The developer was granted an extension to close on the property until the end of the
Cumberland Farms remains interested in purchasing the former Department of Public Works headquarters on Ashland Street, but has again delayed closing on the deal as it reexamines the footprint needed for a new store there.
The new deadline to close is June 30, Bernard said.
Environmental issues were also present at the site of the Windsor Mill, and ultimately derailed an effort to sell it.
Bernard said the city will pause and consider its next steps with the property, which had been the subject of a proposal by architect Simeon Bruner that would have seen it substantially renovated and transformed into a hub of arts-related businesses and artist residences.
But issues were raised in an environmental review of the property.
Sullivan School, on Kemp Avenue, was replaced by the renovated Colegrove Park Elementary School, and now sits vacant. It has failed to generate substantial interest.
Bernard expects the property to be put back out to bid along with the salt shed, assuming B&B drops its plans for the