The middle section of 3-7 Edgewood has been removed, requiring a special permit to allow the now two separate building to be used.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A local brewer is planning to open the city's second farmer brewery in the former Eagles Hall on Curran Highway.
In his application to the Planning Board, Jonathan Spinney said the 10-barrel Rising Glass Brewery would have a tap room and entertainment space along with commissary kitchen.
"We plan to self-distribute and apply for a pouring license to be able to serve beer by the glass," he wrote. "A canning line will be installed in the brewery to facilitate reaching the larger craft beer audience."
Rising Glass would apply for a farmer brewery license that would allow it to produce and serve beer onsite and to retail establishments with a focus on using local ingredients. Bright Ideas Brewing, which opened a couple years ago, operates on the same kind of license.
Plans are to remove and rebuild the entire front wall and relocate the main entrance to the south side. Spinney said the roof and wall are in poor condition and need to be rebuilt to raise the height of the ceiling to fit the brewing equipment. Steel and glass will be used in the reconstruction.
The bathrooms and hall will remain but the kitchen is being redesigned to accommodate up to three small food-based businesses, including baked goods, and have one be the in-house food-provider. The hall would continue to be available for weddings and other events.
The down-sized hall would have a U-shaped bar and table setups and the stage would be moved the north side where the straight bar is currently located. The club bar would become flex space and a beer garden would be on the southwest corner and kitchen garden and employee parking on the northwest side.
The Eagles Aerie 310 Hall closed last year as the club sought to downsize and the building's size and cost to operate became a problem. The property was put on the market with its latest listing price at $179,000.
The 8,000-square-foot hall at 515 Curran Highway was opened in 1969-1970 after the Aerie was forced out of its home in the former Richmond Theater. The theater, which it bought and renovated in 1954, was targeted for demolition for urban renewal.
Also on the Planning Board's agenda on Monday is a plan to renovate two elements of what was a three-family residence at 3-7 Edgewood Avenue.
The property was purchased by Centerville Sticks LLC, which has been buying up properties along Massachusetts Avenue and Edgewood. The principals are Ben and Eric Svenson, brothers who are also involved in the Tourists hotel and restaurant project on State Road and who bought the Blackinton Mill and surrounding property on the north side of the Hoosic River.
The Svensons, through Very Good Building & Development LLC, are asking for a special permit for a nonconforming use because the 5 Edgewood was in such bad shape it had to be demolished. That leaves two separate buildings in close proximity in violation of the zoning ordinances.
Very Good Building is owned by Planning Board member Brian Miksic, who will have to recuse himself from discussion and voting.
Also on the agenda is an application from David Atwell to reopen the former Lopardo's package store on River Street; a construction permit by BOON Properties for the closed gas station at Canal and River (the company had missed the last two meetings and had not yet filed its application by Thursday); an application to operate an office at 60 Roberts Drive; and an application by Colleen Taylor, operating as GR Hospitality Holdings LLC, to open a restaurant at 896 State Road.
Prior to the Planning Board, the Redevelopment Authority will hear an application for a tattoo and piercing business on Ashland Street.
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Drury Graduate to Direct Horror Film in North Adams
By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A Drury High School graduate is hoping to bring his dream — or, more appropriately, his nightmare — to film life.
The horror film "The Uncredited," written by Nick Burchard, will be filmed in North Adams this spring, pending fundraising and the COVID-19 pandemic. Burchard's Tiny Viking Productions is making the film in conjunction with Sancha Spiller and Kasey Rae of Skylah Productions of New York City.
"I grew up in the area, and I've always appreciated the historical places, in particular the Hoosac Tunnel, Mohawk Theater, and the old mills," Burchard said. "I think North Adams has a very unique setting, with the mountains surrounding the city and of course, all the steeples.
"The Uncredited" follows a young woman who appears in an independent film. While watching it, her friends notice something disturbing in the background of her scene. This leads to rumors and distrust in even the closest group of friends.
"My goal is to make great characters, and even though it's a spooky thriller the characters in it are just friends sitting down to watch a movie together," Burchard said. "They crack jokes, roast each other, and are all collectively trying to have a good time … but that juxtaposed with the realization that one of them might be hiding something is what creates the thriller edge to this. I think it's really fun."
Spiller added that the film does not rely on horror tropes such as jump scares. She said the screenplay is character-driven.
"It showcases our greatest fear of not knowing the people around us as well as we think," she said. "It makes us second guess who we trust and remember that just being in the wrong place at the wrong time can have horrifying consequences."