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Large windows have been installed in the terminal where the new restaurant will be located.
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The administrative building is a few weeks behind schedule but is expected to open this fall.

North Adams Airport Hopes to Have Restaurant Operating Next Summer

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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The Airport Commission established a subcommittee to develop a request for proposals for a restaurant in the new airport terminal.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city hopes to release a request for proposals for the airport terminal restaurant in the fall.
 
The Airport Commission agreed Tuesday to form a subcommittee to flesh out what restrictions and preferences it wants to place in the RFP.
 
"Ideally what I would like to see happen, from a timeline standpoint, let's form a subcommittee, finalize what we want, and get this before the commission," Chairman Jeffrey Naughton said. "Then we can move forward and issue it."
 
Last month, Administrative Officer Michael Canales asked the commission to review an RFP used by Westfield to solicit interest in its airport restaurant. He noted the commission has the power to place restrictions and requirements in the RFP.
 
"We took theirs as a template to do ours so if there is anything else you would like to add or take out ... that falls to you as the awarding authority," Canales said. "Anything you place as a requirement they have to meet that as a minimum anything that's a preference we are just saying you will score extra points in the RFP."
 
The vacant medical building donated to the city by Berkshire Health Systems was moved farther back onto the airport campus and is currently being renovated to serve as Harriman & West Airport's administrative building. 
 
Along with housing airport offices, the space will also accommodate a restaurant.
 
Naughton and Canales agreed to serve on the subcommittee as well as Commissioners Shaun Dougherty and Marc Morandi.
 
Right off the bat, Naughton said he wanted the RFP to clearly state that the restauranter needed insurance and Dougherty wanted it to be clear that potential eateries had to purchase their own equipment and utilities.
 
Canales said the commission could vote on the RFP next month and have it released in the fall. 
 
"It would be nice to get it out in the fall to give the person the winter to build out the space and by the next summer have someone in there operating," he said.  
 
In other business, Stantec engineer Peter Enzien gave an update on the terminal building and said the project is still behind schedule but should be completed by the fall.
 
"Probably about two to three weeks behind schedule so I would say they are looking at completion at the beginning of September," he said. "Originally it was going to be the second week in August."
 
Originally the project was ahead of schedule but after opening the walls the contractor found the insulation was not installed to code and had to be redone.
 
Enzien said work is still progressing. The interior walls are completed and the contractor has begun priming the walls. The casework and drop ceilings should begin next week.
 
He said 40 percent of the siding has been fastened and he added that windows and doors have been installed.
 
"So if you are airside looking back at the building you will see the restaurant windows," he said. "Big picture windows that give a panoramic view of the airfield and the mountains in the background."
 
The building now has permanent electrical service, the curbs are in, and the lights that will light the sidewalks have been installed.
 
He said the are starting to form for the exterior sidewalks and paving may begin as early as next week. 
 
"The contractor doesn't want to run on the final course when they still have equipment coming in and going out," he said. "With the heat and the weather you will end up marking it all up so it may get pushed a little bit."

Tags: airport commission,   airport terminal,   

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Be Alert for Opportunities When Preparing for College Costs

Now that summer is winding down, it will soon be "back-to-school" time. When children are young, your logistics for the new academic year may involve little more than a trip to buy school supplies.

But if you would like to send your kids (or grandkids) to college someday, you need to plan far ahead to meet the financial demands. And, as part of your planning, you also need to be on the lookout for all opportunities to help pay those sizable college bills.

Specifically, you will need to be ready to take action in these areas:

Financial aid:
You should start thinking about financial aid at least a year before your child heads off to college. For example, you can begin submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on Oct. 1, 2019, for the 2020-21 academic year. And if the past is any guide, you will always need to remember that Oct. 1 date for the next school year. The FAFSA helps colleges and the U.S. Department of Education evaluate your financial need and determine how much financial support your child requires. And since a lot of financial aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, it's a good idea to submit your forms as soon as possible once the application period opens.

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