1. Articles from masslivenews

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    1. Springfield launches $1.07 million Stearns Square project after delayed start, lower bid (photos)

      Springfield launches $1.07 million Stearns Square project after delayed start, lower bid (photos)

      A West Springfield construction company has begun a $1 million renovation project at Stearns Square and Duryea Way that includes a refurbished historic fountain and improved pedestrian ways. JL Construction Corp. was awarded the project after submitting the low bid of $1,068,000 in February, said Peter Garvey, the city's director of capital asset construction. JL Construction was the low bidder of nine bids submitted. Prior bids submitted in November were deemed too expensive, triggering the city to rebid the project and delay the work, Garvey said.

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    2. Boston developer offers $300,000 for Springfield land as part of downtown apartments project at Willys-Overland building

      Boston developer offers $300,000 for Springfield land as part of downtown apartments project at Willys-Overland building

      A Boston company has offered to pay the city $300,000 for seven tax-title downtown lots on Worthington and Winter streets as part of a $13.8 million project for market rate apartments and retail space at the adjacent Willys-Overland building. The offer made by Davenport Advisors LLC, of Boston, was the sole bid submitted for the city lots by Monday's deadline. The bid has been referred to a city review committee that will submit its recommendation to Mayor Domenic J. Sarno to accept or reject the offer, officials said.

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    3. Valley Opportunity Council wants to hire low-income and at-risk youth for summer

      Valley Opportunity Council wants to hire low-income and at-risk youth for summer

      The Valley Opportunity Council is taking applications for summer jobs for low-income and at-risk youth between the ages of 14 and 21. The program, which is done in collaboration with the Regional Employment Board of Hampden County, offers a structured, well-supervised work experience where employees will learn a variety of job skills while earning a paycheck.

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    4. Western Mass News will open standalone studio at MGM Springfield

      Western Mass News will open standalone studio at MGM Springfield

      Western Mass News will have a standalone studio on the grounds of the MGM Springfield casino when it opens in September. MGM Springfield announced Tuesday that the studio will "go live" near the resort's outdoor plaza and will broadcast select news on a daily basis when the casino opens. The studio will have floor-to-ceiling windows, allowing those passing by to see live broadcasts and interviews. When the studio is not in use, guests will be invited inside to see the "Western Mass News experience," officials said.

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    5. MGM, Springfield get time to make deal on 31 Elm St. market rate housing

      MGM, Springfield get time to make deal on 31 Elm St. market rate housing

      The Massachusetts Gaming Commission agreed this week that a proposal for MGM Springfield to invest in the redevelopment of the historic 31 Elm St. block at Court Square is worth giving MGM additional time to consider that option to help meet its commitment to create new market-rate housing. At a meeting Thursday, the five-member state commission voted to hold MGM Springfield to its host community agreement commitment to create no less than 54 units of market-rate housing in the downtown area as a condition of its casino project.

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    6. Massachusetts Gaming Commission approves casino mitigation funds for Hampden County Sheriff's Department, Springfield and state police

      Massachusetts Gaming Commission approves casino mitigation funds for Hampden County Sheriff's Department, Springfield and state police

      The Massachusetts Gaming Commission on Thursday approved mitigation funds for the Hampden County Sheriff's Department, the Springfield Police Department and state police to offset costs and hardships related to the MGM Springfield casino. In a unanimous vote, the commission granted $772,000 to the sheriff's department over a two-year period to continue easing the higher rent being paid by the department for the Western Massachusetts Correctional Addiction Center. The center moved from what are now the casino grounds to a more expensive location on Mill Street.

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      Mentions: Springfield MGM
    7. 'The story of all of Springfield': Council OKs $100,000 toward city's $1 million image promotion campaign

      'The story of all of Springfield': Council OKs $100,000 toward city's $1 million image promotion campaign

      Councilors said that a key to their support for the campaign is the explanation that it will tell the story of the entire city of Springfield including the neighborhoods, rather than be a downtown promotion. "It's to tell the good story of all the things happening in the great city of Springfield," said Richard K. Sullivan, the president and CEO of the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts, which is overseeing the campaign. "It's not just a downtown campaign. This will not be a casino campaign."

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    8. Springfield Planning Board considers new office building to replace Peter Pan bus station

      Springfield Planning Board considers new office building to replace Peter Pan bus station

      The Planning Board has a hearing scheduled Wednesday night to consider approving plans by a housing agency to demolish the Peter Pan bus terminal and construct an office building in its place. Way Finders, a nonprofit housing services agency that was formerly HAPHousing, is proposing the new, 23,338-square-foot building at the former bus terminal at 1776-1780 Main St. The station site will serve as Way Finders' new headquarters and housing center. The meeting begins at 6 p.m., at City Hall, in Room 220. Way Finders announced the $13 million project in December that includes a $2.75 million ...

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    9. MGM Springfield posts more than 1,000 new jobs as hiring continues ahead of September opening

      MGM Springfield posts more than 1,000 new jobs as hiring continues ahead of September opening

      MGM Springfield has posted more than 1,000 new jobs ranging from food servers to locksmiths as it prepares to open its $960 million casino in September. The posting is the largest by the company since the casino plans were launched, MGM Springfield said. The company is committed to hiring 3,000 employ ees for its opening. "The opportunities at an MGM resort are endless," said MGM Springfield President Michael Mathis. "We know Western Massachusetts has been waiting patiently for the chance to pursue these careers. The time is now."

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      Mentions: Springfield MGM
    10. Casa De Nana Mexican restaurant property in Springfield for sale; business remains open

      Casa De Nana Mexican restaurant property in Springfield for sale; business remains open

      The Casa De Nana restaurant property on Boston Road is for sale, but the business remains open, a spokesman said Friday. The Mexican restaurant has been a Springfield fixture for 50 years, opening in 1968. An "Available" sign has been placed in front of the building at 995 Boston Road, listing R.J. Greeley Co., as the real estate agent. An R.J. Greeley representative was not immediately available for comment.

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    11. Great New England Air Show to return to Westover Air Base in Chicopee, will feature...

      Great New England Air Show to return to Westover Air Base in Chicopee, will feature...

      The Great New England Air Show is returning to Westover Air Reserve Base this summer with the Air Force's demonstration team the Thunderbirds as the headline act and multiple other military and civilian acts planned. "This will be the first time in 10 years that the Air Force's official aerial demonstration team are performing at Westover," said Senior Master Sgt. Andrew Biscoe, acting chief of public affairs. The show is scheduled for the weekend of July 14-15, but there will multiple events leading up to the event for the first time. As always, admission and parking are free ...

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    12. Vendors at diversity fair get peek inside Springfield's CRRC factory, which starts MBTA Orange Line car production next month (photos)

      Vendors at diversity fair get peek inside Springfield's CRRC factory, which starts MBTA Orange Line car production next month (photos)

      The CRRC MA rail car manufacturing company drew a large, diverse crowd of vendors and suppliers to its $95 million factory Thursday to discuss work opportunities there and with other participating firms. CRRC hosted the outreach event for minority- and women-owned businesses at its Page Boulevard factory, the final such event before production begins, officials said. The Chinese-owned company will start building new cars for the MBTA Orange Line in April at the 204,000 square-foot factory floor.

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    13. 'A lot of excitement' as MGM Springfield prepares to hire 800 food and beverage workers (photos, video)

      'A lot of excitement' as MGM Springfield prepares to hire 800 food and beverage workers (photos, video)

      The MGM Springfield casino, preparing to hire 800 food and beverage workers, held an open house Thursday to meet and share information with future applicants. The event at the MassMutual Center took on the flavor of a job fair as Western Massachusetts and Connecticut residents participated. They were greeted by MGM officials and representatives of the restaurants and other food and beverage establishments opening at the casino.

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    14. Owner says $41 million rehab of Paramount Theater-Massasoit property in downtown Springfield set to begin

      Owner says $41 million rehab of Paramount Theater-Massasoit property in downtown Springfield set to begin

      Developer Heriberto Flores said his agency anticipates launching a $41 million redevelopment project in June of the historic Paramount Theater and Massasoit building, seen as a key component of downtown revitalization efforts. Flores, president of the New England Farm Workers Council, which owns the Paramount/Massasoit property, said the extensive rehabilitation project will begin with replacement of the roof, needed to protect the site from further deterioration. The Farm Workers Council is investing private and public funds, including state and federal tax credits, to restore the Paramount as a 1,750-seat performing arts center and the attached Massasoit building as ...

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    15. Businesses pledge $400K toward Springfield 'image campaign,' pending city's contribution

      Businesses pledge $400K toward Springfield 'image campaign,' pending city's contribution

      A top economic development official told city councilors this week the business community is ready to contribute $400,000 toward a $1 million "image campaign" to promote Springfield if the city contributes $100,000. In addition, Richard K. Sullivan Jr., president and CEO of the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts, said he expects that combined total of $500,000 in cash would be matched by in-kind contributions from media organizations including The Republican, MassLive, WWLP 22 News, Western Mass News, along with Comcast.

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    16. MGM Springfield unveils further details of $960 million casino project, requests an extra year to develop housing at Elm Street property

      MGM Springfield unveils further details of $960 million casino project, requests an extra year to develop housing at Elm Street property

      MGM Springfield unveiled new details and some changes being proposed at its $960 million casino on Thursday, ranging from its plans for a free downtown shuttle bus system to a desire to have more table games and fewer slot machines to address millennial customer preference. The details were shared with the Massachusetts Gaming Commission at its meeting in Boston.

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      Mentions: Springfield MGM
    17. Springfield sells old Indian Orchard landfill, Chapman Valve parcel for reuse as solar...

      Springfield sells old Indian Orchard landfill, Chapman Valve parcel for reuse as solar...

      The City Council has approved the sale of two Indian Orchard properties -- a former landfill and part of the contaminated Chapman Valve site -- to two local developers who will convert the sites to solar farms, self-storage units, and a small orchard. At a meeting Monday night, the council voted unanimously to transfer a 22-acre property on Oak Street, formerly part of Chapman Valve, and a 16-acre property on Pinevale Street, formerly a landfill, to Roger Roberge II and Marc Murphy, for a total bid price of $15,000. Tom Matthews, project manager for the city's Office of Planning and ...

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    18. Putnam Vocational-Technical Academy puts students on road to high-paying careers

      Putnam Vocational-Technical Academy puts students on road to high-paying careers

      Rafael Rivera, a sophomore at Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical Academy, can see a clear path to a bright future from the seat of a virtual John Deere 310SL backhoe-bucket loader. Rivera, 16, is among 15 sophomores enrolled in the school's new construction and craft labor shop who can expect to land high-paying union jobs starting at $17.50 an hour in highway construction after graduation. The shop where they learn exists thanks to a $441,000 federal Pell grant that Putnam received to staff and outfit the 3,850-square-foot facility with the kind of equipment students will use ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
    19. TechSpring redefining the future of health care in region and beyond

      TechSpring redefining the future of health care in region and beyond

      In the not-too-distant future, the delivery of quality health care could be as easy as reading a patient's palm. But the palm reader won't be tucked away in a carnival booth. Instead, the future of health care innovations will most likely come from TechSpring Health Technology Center, a digital nerve center backed by the resources of the $2.5 billion Baystate Health Systems. Currently, TechSpring is collaborating with private health care IT security company imprivata -- headquartered in the eastern part of the state -- to bring palm vein scanning technology used for positive identification of patients  to the medical ...

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    20. Bay Path University blazes trail to fit workplace, women's needs

      Bay Path University blazes trail to fit workplace, women's needs

      Started as a secretarial school more than a century ago, Bay Path University is now in the vanguard of efforts to speed up higher education's response time to the ever-changing workplace. Much of Bay Path's evolution from a four-year-college with three satellite campuses and total enrollment of 3,298 began in 1994 when Carol A. Leary became the institution's fifth president. "You can never rest," Leary said in a recent interview at the school's flagship campus in Longmeadow. "That's an important tenet we've always had."

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    21. Dietz & Co. Architects on ground floor of new Springfield

      Dietz & Co. Architects on ground floor of new Springfield

      It makes perfect sense that Dietz & Co. Architects - a firm specializing in historic restoration - would become the first tenant to sign a lease for office space in the $92 million renovation of the long-derelict and dilapidated building. Founded in 1985 by Kerry L Dietz, the firm has made a name for itself by taking old urban structures and redesigning them for 21st century use.  Over the years, the company's fortunes have mirrored downtown Springfield's revitalization progress. Now the largest architectural firm in the region with 26 employees, the company has left its distinctive mark on dozens of historic ...

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    22. Chicopee spends $1.14 million on public safety upgrades

      Chicopee spends $1.14 million on public safety upgrades

      The police and fire departments are purchasing new vehicles and a range of new equipment after the City Council approved a variety of spending requests recently. The City Council approved $1,140,088 to do everything from purchasing new fire truck and cruisers to upgrading weapons and buying new speed-enforcement signs. All the money came from either the stabilization account or the free cash account. The city received a record $10.6 million in free cash when the state Department of Revenue certified the money in December. That money comes from revenues received from taxes, reimbursements from grants and other ...

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      Mentions: Chicopee
    23. Want to become a table dealer for MGM Springfield? These upcoming informational sessions are the first step

      Want to become a table dealer for MGM Springfield? These upcoming informational sessions are the first step

      MGM Springfield, which is constructing a $960 million resort casino, has announced a series of informational sessions in March, April and May for those who are interested in starting a career as a games table dealer. Representatives from MGM Springfield and the Massachusetts Casino Career Training Institute (MCCTI) will review specifics on registration and enrollment for gaming classes at the new MCCTI Gaming School now open in downtown Springfield. Attendees will hear "what it takes to become a successful dealer, the skills required, opportunities available, and how the Gaming School can help," MGM Springfield said in announcing the sessions. Representatives ...

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    24. Springfield gears up for $2.5 million Riverfront Park renovation as Agawam company emerges as low bidder

      Springfield gears up for $2.5 million Riverfront Park renovation as Agawam company emerges as low bidder

      An Agawam company this week submitted the lowest bid for a major renovation at Riverfront Park. JL Construction submitted a base bid of $2,418,000, the lowest of six bids received by Wednesday's deadline. The bid is within expectations and should allow the project to proceed this spring, officials said. The city is likely to add the option under JL Construction's bid of sodding the field for an additional $68,500, said Peter Garvey, the city's director of capital asset construction.

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