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The former high school is listed for $2 million.

Former St. Joe High School Up For Sale

By Andy McKeeveriBerkshires Staff
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The former St. Joseph Central School is on the market.
Colebrook Realty Services has listed the Maplewood Avenue property for sale or for lease. Diocese of Springfield spokesman Mark DuPont said the Roman Catholic Diocese is willing to listen to all types of offers for the entire property, pieces, or a lease agreement.
"We try to give ourselves a lot of room to maneuver and get the best possible return," DuPont said. "We're open to all offers."
Colebrook has listed the school for sale at $2 million or is willing to lease at $6 per square foot. The former 44,650 square-foot high school is on slightly more than an acre of land in downtown Pittsfield. It contains offices, classrooms, a gymnasium, cafeteria, locker rooms and a full kitchen. It also features a dozen or so parking spaces.
"We had a few very soft interests but that never came to fruition," DuPont said.
The 120-year-old high school was closed last spring. It was opened in 1897 as St. Joseph's Academy but over time enrollment dropped significantly. Eventually, the diocese could not financially support it.
But several of the church's properties in the area have faced a similar situation over the years. Pittsfield particularly has been successful in finding developers for the properties. 
"The money from all of these church sales stayed with the Pittsfield Catholic Community," DuPont noted.
St. Mark's School was closed in 2015 and Hillcrest Educational redeveloped the site. The St. Mary the Morningstar property was recently sold to CT Management, which has plans to transform the structures into market-rate housing — just as it did with the former Notre Dame School and the former Holy Family Church. 
"Other than St. Joe, all of the properties have been sold," DuPont said."We've been generally pleased with our real estate consultants."
St. Theresa, on South Street, was the most recent church to be demolished, and that lot is the site of the current Berkshire Place. But, that is an outlier. Nearly all of the former church properties were redeveloped in ways preserving the historic integrity of the buildings. 
The St. Joe property is particularly notable because it anchors one end of North Street's main drag. Over the last decade, North Street has undergone a massive renovation as officials focused attention on revamping downtown. 

Tags: Real Estate,   school reuse,   st joe,   

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Berkshire Museum's 'Art of the Hills' Will Open On Time, Online

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Despite COVID-19 restrictions, Berkshire Museum’s featured summer exhibit, "Art of the Hills: Narrative," will open on its previously scheduled date, Saturday, June 6, with one major modification: Instead of hanging on the plaster walls of the community museum’s galleries each selected work will be displayed on the simulated walls of an immersive, high-resolution 3D rendering. 

Visitors to the virtual exhibit will feel as if they are touring the museum’s galleries thanks to a cutting-edge technique that combines a three-dimensional digital model with crisp, colorful images of the artists' work and user-friendly navigation.

The online exhibit will kick off at 5:30 p.m. on June 6 with a virtual tour of the show presented by jurors Amy Myers and Seung Lee followed by a live Q&A. The community is encouraged to register online to reserve their space at the free online event.

After the virtual opening event has concluded, the innovative digital exhibition will be added to the website so that visitors may "walk" or "fly" through the galleries using their web browser or virtual reality headset as they examine each artwork in high definition at their own pace as part of the museum's popular Berkshire Museum@Home online programming. Additional "Art of the Hills: Narrative" events and digital content will be added to the site throughout the run of the virtual show as they are announced.

"We are committed to carrying on our mission, fulfilling our promise to the many talented artists in the show, and above all else: keeping or community and staff safe," said Jeff Rodgers, executive director of the Berkshire Museum. "Bringing this exhibition online does just that. I’m thrilled that we are able to share the work of Berkshire artists with the public now and look forward to opening."

The new exhibit is the second installment of "Art of the Hills," a juried exhibition that celebrates the rich, creative culture of our region by highlighting the works of emerging and established artists that live or work within a 60-mile radius of Berkshire Museum’s location in downtown Pittsfield. The first "Art of the Hills" exhibition debuted at the Berkshire Museum in 2018.

"Art of the Hills: Narrative" features 78 works by 64 artists thoughtfully curated from a collection of more than 530 submitted works. Jurors Seung Lee and Amy Myers embraced the "narrative" theme in similar but unique ways: Lee sought pieces that "tell the viewer a story by using features such as character, scenes, time, technique, and purpose," with an emphasis on skillful interpretation of a perceived concept; while Myers reviewed the works from the standpoint of time and wonder, selecting pieces that left her with "a question or curiosity" rather than a conclusion.

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