"It was a little bit of the artist in me," Ariel Sutain said of the paint job brightening the drive along Union Street (Route 2).
"Obviously, we're going through a major renovation here, and we had to board up the windows. We decided to do it in colors."
The structure was being used largely for paid storage; a section on the west end unaffected by the collapse was set up as gallery space.
Sutain said he expects within six weeks to hear proposals from the Pittsfield firm Barry Engineers and Constructors, whom he has hired to plan the renovation.
"These things never go as fast as you would like, but it's going in the right direction," he said.
Sutain said he is optimistic he will be able to begin reconstruction on the former textile mill this year.
"Dealing with a 100-year-old building in 2012 is a little bit different," he said. "It's just a little bit tricky dealing with a collapsed roof and then ... taking down sections of the building and then rebuilding."
One thing he never considered was the option of taking down the mill and building from scratch on the site.
"That was never a consideration," Sutain said. "It's 106 years old, and we're doing everything we can to make sure it continues the way it was."
Sutain said he anticipates being able to use the building again as a storage facility once the renovations are completed.
In the meantime, he is happy to be able to add a little beauty to the unoccupied mill.
"I guess [former] Mayor [John] Barrett would be glad to have us quote him: 'In order to attract, we have to be attractive,'" Sutain said.
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Ms. Daniels Editor, maybe you can help me out, didn't the Mayor last year say that they had a Engineering Study done on that mill, Maybe you can post a copy on line of the study, as I can not see how a good wind won't blow down that building, and just don't believe and study came back saying the cost factor was worth it to do a major repair.