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The work of renovating the former medical building at the airport is ahead of schedule.

North Adams Airport Administrative Building Work Ahead of Schedule

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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The Airport Commission hears updates on the progress of the administrative building. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Contractor D.A. Sullivan & Sons look to complete work on the new administrative building at Harriman & West Airport by the end of June.
Peter Enzien of Stantec Consulting Services, the airport's engineer, told the Airport Commission on Tuesday that since the building’s move earlier this year, the contractor has been steadily working on the interior and exterior of the building.
"Since they moved the building, all of the under slab, piping and conduits have been installed for the electric and plumbing," he said. "The floor slab was completed just before mid-February … they figured they were a couple of weeks ahead of schedule."
The city and commission agreed to recycle and use the vacant medical building that sat just off Route 2 on airport land after funding gaps prevented the city from building a completely new structure.
The 8,700-square-foot building was lifted and moved back on to the airport campus with a motorized trailer in mid-January.
The building was donated to the city by Berkshire Health Systems and will hold an office and classroom space, public restrooms, and a food service operation.
Enzien said much of the interior framing work is complete.
"They have completed most of the building framing on the first and second floors if you go in now you can see all of the rooms," he said. "They are framing the front entry and the stair tower to the east."
He said the rough-ins for the HVAC, electrical, and fire suppression should be installed by the end of the month and site work should commence in April.
He said the next steps are insulating and drywall. 
Enzien said most of the foundation and debris from the former location has been removed and this work will be complete once the demolition contractor returns.
He said some crushed stone has been placed in the parking area to combat the mud from the winter thaw but this will be eventually paved.
Enzien said although the contractor has hopes of finishing early the contract is that they have until the end of July.
In other business, Enzien said the city can now purchase mowing equipment to help maintain the perimeter of the airport. 
"We do have a contract … the city can move forward with the purchase," he said. "Once we get the orders out they will be delivered to the city."
The equipment will be Caterpillar. 

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North Adams Fire Chief Meranti to Retire

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff

Fire Chief Stephen Meranti, center, with the late Public Safety Commissioner E. John Morocco on receiving the MEMA award in 2015. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Stephen Meranti had a particular goal in mind when he updated his resume in the mid-1990s: to become director of the city's fire services.
Early next year, he'll retire after 17 years leading the North Adams Fire Department and as the first "fire chief" to retire in nearly 40 years. 
"I've had a pretty good run I think, 33 years with the city and 17 as chief," said Meranti on Wednesday morning, as he sat in the mayor's office. "It's been a good run, we have great people working with the city, I've had made great relationships here. It's like the mayor said, bittersweet for me also. I love the job I but I had planned on my career retiring at 55 and here I am." 
Meranti and Mayor Thomas Bernard announced the chief's retirement after more than three decades working with the city. His last day will be Jan. 26, 2021.
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