1. Articles from CBerry413

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    1. GreatHorse says it's working with Hampden to get 'all necessary approvals' for banquet center expansion, but critics of exclusive country club say otherwise

      GreatHorse says it's working with Hampden to get 'all necessary approvals' for banquet center expansion, but critics of exclusive country club say otherwise

      A lawyer for GreatHorse says the golf and country club expanded its Starting Gate banquet facility in anticipation of the Town of Hampden bringing water and sewer service to the Springfield suburb, leaving the exclusive "lifestyle club" susceptible to potential state violations. But after facing increasing pressure from the public, town officials late last year withdrew their application for a $2 million state grant that would have paid for part of the estimated $4.8 million project to bring sewer service to Hampden's west side business district. The area includes GreatHorse, Rediker Software, restaurants, stores and other commercial facilities.

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    2. Craft breweries popping up across Greater Springfield

      Craft breweries popping up across Greater Springfield

      When you think of Wilbraham, Massachusetts -- birthplace of Friendly's Ice Cream and where Timothy Merrick was immortalized in song after dying from a rattlesnake bite up on "Springfield Mountain" -- beer may not be the first thing that pops into your mind. But craft breweries are suddenly popping up all over Greater Springfield, including two here in Wilbraham, Springfield's eastern neighbor, and one apiece in neighboring Ludlow and Hampden. Talks are also in the works to bring independent brewers to West Springfield, according to Mayor Will Reichelt, who has been trying to make West Side more appealing to millennials ...

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    3. MassDOT announces $21.5M project to rebuild Morgan-Sullivan Bridge linking Agawam to West Springfield near Big E

      MassDOT announces $21.5M project to rebuild Morgan-Sullivan Bridge linking Agawam to West Springfield near Big E

      The Massachusetts Department of Transportation Board of Directors announced Monday that the $21.5 million Morgan-Sullivan Bridge reconstruction project is slated to get underway this summer. The aging bridge carries traffic on Memorial Avenue (Route 147) over the Westfield River between Agawam and West Springfield near The Big E fairgrounds. State Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver says MassDOT appreciates the input it received from its two municipal partners in the state and federal project, which calls for replacing the structurally deficient bridge with a wider span that can handle increased traffic capacity. The federal government is expected to fund around 80 ...

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    4. Massachusetts Association of Regional Planning Agencies urging state to continue funding technical assistance programs that help municipalities

      Massachusetts Association of Regional Planning Agencies urging state to continue funding technical assistance programs that help municipalities

      A critical funding source that allows the state's 13 regional planning agencies to provide free technical assistance to municipal planning departments was not included in the state Senate budget and now depends on the Legislature's conference committee to preserve it. Timothy W. Brennan, the executive director of both the Massachusetts Association of Regional Planning Agencies and the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, sent a letter last week to members of the fiscal year 2019 Budget Conference Committee, "strongly and respectfully" urging them to authorize $2.8 million for the District Local Technical Assistance program and $88 million for Regional ...

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    5. West Springfield to work with Pioneer Valley Planning Commission on affordable housing production plan

      West Springfield to work with Pioneer Valley Planning Commission on affordable housing production plan

      The town has received two free technical assistance grants to work with the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission on a housing production plan and a stormwater ordinance to comply with upcoming changes to West Springfield's permit from the Environmental Protection Agency.  West Springfield Planning Administrator Allyson Manuel announced the news at Wednesday's Planning Board meeting. The housing production plan is expected to examine West Side's current needs, including a strategy to develop more affordable units in town. As of September 2017, West Side's affordable housing stock was around 3.4 percent, or 429 units, according to the ...

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    6. Sisters of Providence break ground on affordable housing with elder care services in West...

      Sisters of Providence break ground on affordable housing with elder care services in West...

      The Sisters of Providence have broken ground on Hillside Residence, a $10 million project to build 36 units of affordable, elder care housing on the 27-acre Providence campus at 2112 Riverdale St. The project calls for integrating housing for residents age 62 or older with the health services they will need as they grow older, according to Sister Kathleen Popko, president of the Sisters of Providence.  "At times, the dream seemed futile," Popko told the crowd gathered Friday at the site where the housing will soon rise, recalling the ups and downs of trying to secure project funding over the ...

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    7. Ludlow Mills lands $300K in historic tax credits, says Rep. Thomas Petrolati

      Ludlow Mills lands $300K in historic tax credits, says Rep. Thomas Petrolati

      The mammoth Ludlow Mills complex has landed $300,000 in historic tax credits from the state, said Rep. Thomas M. Petrolati, D-Ludlow, a strong supporter of the ongoing preservation and redevelopment project along the banks of the Chicopee River.  The funding will help developer WinnCompanies complete a restoration project that's expected to produce 89 residential units and create up to 100 construction jobs at the iconic Clock Tower Building at Mill 8, one of the many buildings at the sprawling complex covering 170 acres between State Street and the river.

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    8. Mayor Reichelt's idea to lure breweries, businesses 'offering a fun social experience" gaining steam in West Springfield

      Mayor Reichelt's idea to lure breweries, businesses 'offering a fun social experience" gaining steam in West Springfield

      Mayor Will Reichelt's push to tweak the town's zoning regulations to make West Springfield a more "fun social experience" for residents and out-of-towners alike has earned support from the Planning Board and a committee that is reviewing the zoning regulations. On April 18, the Planning Board unanimously voted to issue a favorable report on the mayor's proposal to amend the Zoning Ordinance to add recreational uses, breweries, distilleries and wineries to the town's industrial zoning district.

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    9. Mayor Reichelt: West Springfield zoning changes could make city 'more exciting' for developers, beer-brewing companies

      Mayor Reichelt: West Springfield zoning changes could make city 'more exciting' for developers, beer-brewing companies

      With news that West Springfield is working to bring Two Weeks Notice Brewing Co. to the city, the mayor has proposed changing zoning regulations to include recreational facilities, breweries, distilleries and wineries in the city's industrial zones. "We're in talks with a couple (of breweries) now, namely Two Weeks Notice, to relocate in town," said Mayor William C. Reichelt, who is petitioning the Town Council to approve changes to make the city's industrial sites "more exciting to developers."

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    10. Eastern States Exposition donates over $240K to Big E/West Springfield Trust

      Eastern States Exposition donates over $240K to Big E/West Springfield Trust

      The Eastern States Exposition has donated over $240,000 to The Big E/West Springfield Trust Fund, the largest contribution since the fund was established 24 years ago. The sum represents 1 percent of the ESE's gross revenues for 2017. "This is a special year because it's the biggest check we've been able to give to the town," ESE President Eugene J. Cassidy said Wednesday, presenting a check for $240,198 to West Springfield Mayor William C. Reichelt. "Your success is our success," said the mayor, who is one of three trustees responsible for administering the fund ...

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    11. Morgan Drewniany leaving Springfield Central Cultural District job to become West Springfield's community development administrator

      Morgan Drewniany leaving Springfield Central Cultural District job to become West Springfield's community development administrator

      Morgan Drewniany is leaving her position as executive director of the Springfield Central Cultural District to work for the Town of West Springfield. "She's coming over in April as our community development administrator," Mayor William C. Reichelt confirmed Thursday. "I think she'll be great," he said. "I met her through Leadership Pioneer Valley last year, as we were both in the same class. I'm very excited for her to start here."

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    12. Skechers footwear store coming to West Springfield's Century Center

      Skechers footwear store coming to West Springfield's Century Center

      Skechers, the California-based global footwear company, is opening a 10,000-square-foot store at Century Center, the 285,000-square-foot shopping complex on Memorial Avenue in West Springfield.  The store is set to open in March, according to Andrew M. Cohen, owner of Century Center, the region's first strip mall. "We are excited to have the No. 2 shoe brand in the world join the center," he said in a statement Thursday. Cohen said Skechers will be a "great addition" to Century Center, located just over the Memorial Bridge from Springfield.

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    13. Irish government awards grant to Irish Cultural Center of Western New England

      Irish government awards grant to Irish Cultural Center of Western New England

      The Irish government's Emigrant Support Programme has awarded the Irish Cultural Center of Western New England a $64,500 grant to hire a full-time executive director to administer and grow the regional nonprofit organization. The executive director will focus on overseeing completion of the four-level facility on Morgan Road in West Springfield, which features the popular Irish House Restaurant and Trinity Pub on the second floor and will eventually include a library and genealogy center in the lower level and a banquet hall on the upper level. 

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    14. West Springfield has new twin sister in Ireland

      West Springfield has new twin sister in Ireland

      West Springfield Mayor William C. Reichelt has signed a "memorandum of understanding" with the Kerry County Council to form a sister city agreement with Dingle, a tiny town in southwest Ireland. "Myself and a contingent from (West Springfield) are heading back today from Ireland, where we signed a sister city agreement with Dingle, Ireland," Reichelt told The Republican early Tuesday morning.  The goal is to build cultural bridges by expanding opportunities between the communities, according to the mayor.

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    15. Gov. Charlie Baker, WinnDevelopment celebrate 'Residences at Mill 10' at Ludlow Mills

      Gov. Charlie Baker, WinnDevelopment celebrate 'Residences at Mill 10' at Ludlow Mills

      Gov. Charlie Baker and Rep. Thomas M. Petrolati, D-Ludlow, joined WinnDevelopment officials Thursday to celebrate the property development company's completion of the Residences at Mill 10, an almost $20 million transformation of a former mill building into 75 units of mixed-income, age-restricted housing at the sprawling Ludlow Mills complex.  "Kudos to everybody who was involved in the design and delivery," Baker said to the large crowd that squeezed into the community room of the former Mill 10 building, now officially known as the Residences at Mill 10.

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    16. Baker-Polito administration awards $343,000 for 'collaborative workspaces' in Western Massachusetts

      Baker-Polito administration awards $343,000 for 'collaborative workspaces' in Western Massachusetts

      The Baker-Polito administration on Tuesday granted a total of $343,845 to seven organizations in Western Massachusetts to strengthen community-based innovation and entrepreneurship. "The Collaborative Workspace Program bolsters Massachusetts' innovation and creative economies by providing entrepreneurs with physical space, mentorship, training opportunities and investment capital," said state Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash, who shared the news at an event at Gateway City Arts in Holyoke.

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    17. Ludlow Mills project scores $3.5 million MassWorks grant for construction of 'Riverside Drive'

      Ludlow Mills project scores $3.5 million MassWorks grant for construction of 'Riverside Drive'

      Rep. Thomas M. Petrolati, D-Ludlow, was joined by state Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash at Ludlow Mills on Tuesday to announce a $3.5 million state grant for ongoing redevelopment at the 170-acre site, about a third of the way through a 15- to 20-year build-out. "His word is his bond, his handshake is his commitment," Petrolati said of Ash, who awarded the MassWorks grant to the Town of Ludlow for construction of Riverside Drive. The 4,500-foot road will provide full access to the site, helping the mill's existing businesses, workers and residents and accessing an ...

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    18. R.R. LeDuc Corporation, Holyoke precision sheet metal business, reaches half-century mark

      R.R. LeDuc Corporation, Holyoke precision sheet metal business, reaches half-century mark

      Robert R. Leduc, president and founder of a precision sheet metal fabrication and custom powder-coating business in Holyoke, looks young for an octogenarian. Bob, as he's known, is 80 years old but could easily pass for a much younger man. "I'm 80 1/2 years old," LeDuc said precisely, sounding like someone who has worked in a precision industry for the past 50 years. "It's my passion. I have no desire to retire," said the father of six adult children, some of whom will take over leadership of R.R. LeDuc Corp. when the time is right ...

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    19. 'Westmass Area Development Corporation has done a tremendous job on this project,' US Rep. Richard Neal says while touring Ludlow Mills complex

      'Westmass Area Development Corporation has done a tremendous job on this project,' US Rep. Richard Neal says while touring Ludlow Mills complex

      The conversion of a formerly vacant mill building into 75 apartments for residents age 50 or older is "incredibly impressive," U.S. Rep. Richard E. Neal, D-Springfield, said after a recent tour of the sprawling Ludlow Mills complex.  "Westmass Area Development Corp. has done a tremendous job on this project and has shown what can be done to bring these old workspaces back to life," Neal said, referring to the regional not-for-profit industrial and business developer overseeing the multimillion-dollar transformation of the site between State Street and the Chicopee River.

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    20. West Springfield receives MassDOT grant to upgrade crossings near Town Common

      West Springfield receives MassDOT grant to upgrade crossings near Town Common

      The town has received a Complete Streets grant from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to help increase safety and accessibility for all modes of travel, including driving, walking and cycling.  West Springfield is using its $384,200 MassDOT grant to upgrade pedestrian crossings along Park Avenue and Park Street near the Town Common in the downtown area, according to Mayor William C. Reichelt. "We are very lucky to have such a beautiful Common in the center of our community, but crossing is difficult," Reichelt said Monday. "This grant will allow us to improve the safety of crossing to the Common ...

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    21. State Rep. Tom Petrolati talks up Ludlow Mills as redevelopment efforts continue at 170-acre site

      State Rep. Tom Petrolati talks up Ludlow Mills as redevelopment efforts continue at 170-acre site

      State Rep. Thomas M. Petrolati has been a big supporter of the Ludlow Mills Preservation and Redevelopment project since its inception, which is why he's so pleased with the progress at the 170-acre State Street site bordering the Chicopee River. The Ludlow Democrat and state Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash recently took an "informal site walk," said Petrolati, who's even more excited about the next phase of the project: the construction of Riverside Drive.

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    22. On track: Developer of Ludlow Mills, largest brownfield project in New England, continues...

      On track: Developer of Ludlow Mills, largest brownfield project in New England, continues...

      The not-for-profit corporation overseeing the redevelopment of Ludlow Mills, the largest brownfield project in New England, continues to seek and secure funding to overhaul the sprawling mill complex bordering the Chicopee River. That was the word from Eric Nelson, president and CEO of Westmass Area Development Corporation, at a recent selectmen's meeting, where he updated the board on funding plans and ongoing work at the 170-acre site between the river and State Street. Much has happened since Westmass bought the property six years ago, according to Nelson. "I believe the board would agree that we're on the upward ...

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    23. Ludlow seeking $7M in grants for Westmass Area Development's Riverside Drive project

      Ludlow seeking $7M in grants for Westmass Area Development's Riverside Drive project

      The Board of Selectmen has agreed to apply for $7 million worth of grants on behalf of Westmass Area Development Corp., the region's leading industrial and business park developer, so Westmass can get started on its Riverside Drive project at Ludlow Mills. If Ludlow receives the funding, work on the roadway could begin as early as spring 2018, according to the president and CEO of Westmass, Eric Nelson, who advocated for the grants at the selectmen's July 11 meeting. 

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    24. Agri-Mark to break ground on $17M expansion of West Springfield plant

      Agri-Mark to break ground on $17M expansion of West Springfield plant

      WEST SPRINGFIELD -- Agri-Mark Inc. will break ground Monday on a $17 million expansion of its West Springfield plant, according to Doug DiMento, director of corporate communications for the farmer-owned cooperative.   Agri-Mark officials and farmers will be joined by Mayor William C. Reichelt and other officials at 9:30 a.m. at the plant at 958 Riverdale St. Parking is available next door at 1000 Riverdale St

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