Council OKs Land Buy; Handicapped Signs Coming
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The City Council on Tuesday night authorized the mayor to buy a section of the parking lot of the Armory for $1.
The .166-acre plot should have been included in the city's purchase of the former National Guard Armory on Ashland Street several years ago. Mayor Richard Alcombright said Michael Nuvallie of the Office of Community Development had worked over the past year with the state Division of Capital Asset Management, which set the value at $18,000 after an appraisal was done.
"This parcel is obviously very important to the project and while erroneously omitted from purchase, it was pretty clear we would have to pay," the mayor read from his communication to the council. He credited Daniel Bosley, former state representative, for getting the priced dropped to a dollar in one of his "last legislative efforts" and saving the city $18,000.
The Armory is currently undergoing an extensive renovation through the use of federal and state grants with the idea of using it as a community or youth center.
A proposal for a hawkers and peddlars ordinance that's been floating around for most of a year was filed at the request of the mayor.
"We've been successful just by monitoring them and running them through the Board of Health," said Alcombright of food vendors operating at events in the city. General Government Committee Chairman Keith Bona and committee member Lisa Blackmer concurred that there had been no issues to date. The mayor said he will meet with Bona and Tourism and Cultural Development Director Veronica Bosley to craft a city policy for vendors.
Councilor Marie Harpin expressed her concern over the continued detioration of the Hoosac Mill and the safety of the sidewalk area where parts of the roof had collapsed over the winter. The mayor said he would be meeting with the owner and the building inspector on Thursday and that jersey barriers would replace the current plastic fencing to prevent people from using the sidewalk.
Councilor Alan Marden asked about the disappearance of the handicapped parking spots on Main Street. The mayor said the spots still existed but the signs had not been installed.
"Everything we paid so much attention to for ADA compliance ... and handicapped parking signs were not drawn on the plans," the mayor said. "We've gotten that resolved."
In the meantime, he reminded those with handicapped plates or placards that they could park in any spot, not just the designated ones.