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Lenox Keeping Close Eye On Proposed Stockbridge Development

By Andy McKeever
iBerkshires Staff
07:31PM / Wednesday, August 06, 2014
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Town Manager Christopher Ketchen told the Board of Selectmen on Wednesday that the town is keeping a close eye on the development.
LENOX, Mass. — Town officials are keeping a close eye on the proposed Elm Court expansion in Stockbridge.
 
Real estate company Amstar is proposing a $50 million expansion of the historic mansion, which sits on the border of Lenox and Stockbridge. About 100 more hotel rooms, a spa and a new restaurant are proposed, a scope large enough to rival Cranwell.
 
The company is currently seeking a special permit for operations in Stockbridge but will need Lenox approval later. Town Manager Christopher Ketchen said on Wednesday that the town is keeping a close eye on the development because of residents' concerns for the major change in landscape and traffic.
 
"We're monitoring the developments in Stockbridge," Ketchen said.
 
Ketchen said he has met with Stockbridge Town Administrator Jorja-Ann Marsden and also attended Monday's public hearing, which was continued until Sept. 8.
 
"We were able to communicate some of the concerns," Ketchen said of his meeting with Marsden. "She provided us with some information to bring our board members further up to speed."
 
Selectman Ed Lane said all they can do at this point is monitor the situation until the company asks Lenox for permits. Ketchen said the company has "repeatedly said" they will finish the permitting in Stockbridge before coming to Lenox.
 
"There is not much more we can do at this point," Lane said. "Without them actually presenting anything to the town, we are at a loss of what we can do or can't do."
 
Amstar purchased the property in 2012 under subsidiary Travaasa Experiential Resorts for $9.8 million. 
 
The mansion was built in 1886 by the Sloane-Vanderbilt family. Before Travaasa, the Vanderbilt family retained ownership and most recently operated it as a private resort. 

Tags: historical building,   permitting,   resort,   

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