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The Berkshire Mall closed permanently in 2019. The current owners are now considering a senior living complex for the property.

Berkshire Mall Cannabis Plans Scrapped for Senior Living Facility

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff
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LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Berkshire Mall's new owners took the Select Board by surprise on Monday when they reported a pivot from cannabis cultivation plans.

Target's refusal to dissolve prohibitive restrictions and oversaturation of the market have JMJ Holdings now leaning toward a senior living facility with condominiums and other commercial uses on the property.

"We understand that this is a large change from our original plan but it's very important to us to become a long-standing member of this town," JMJ's Jay Jones said.

"We want to take this opportunity to do what's right for residents of this county and for our business."

Jones said the development would consist of independent living, assisted living, nursing and memory care units. In the plans are also multifamily units and new development that would include doctors' offices, restaurants and retail space.

JMJ would also like to have an expanded emergency medical services on the property.

"We strongly believe that this would be a great benefit not only to the town of Lanesborough but to Berkshire County as well," Jones said.

"The new real estate development would bring in construction jobs, nursing jobs and a variety of other permanent good-paying jobs. As the baby-boomer population grows elderly, housing, assisted living, and nursing homes are absolutely needed in his community, as well as many others. Perhaps the greatest benefit from this new development to the town is the creation of higher tax revenue than would have been generated through a cannabis facility."

He said the preliminary estimates show between $2.5 million to $3 million in new tax revenue.

Jones said the company has carefully researched the 2019 future use study on the property done through the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission and interacted with residents and political leadership. That coupled with the the declining cannabis market led them to pivot plans.

Selectman Timothy Sorrell said the board was surprised but is glad to see something done with the property that will generate tax revenue.

"An empty building doesn't do any of us any good," he said.

Selectman John Goerlach also did not have any objection to the action. Selectman Michael Murphy was absent.

The board signed a Community Host Agreement for the cannabis manufacturing reuse earlier this year.  The owners would like to hold onto the agreement for the possibility of partnering with infusible product companies.

The mall has largely been out of use since 2019 with the exception of Regal Cinema, which closed in 2022, and Target, which is the only remaining store left and which owns the structure it's in separately from the mall.

Jones said they have to address the real issue of the cost to make the property usable and benefit the town while making money.

"I think this is the best solution that we can come up with," he said. "We look forward to working with the town. It gives us the opportunity to write a whole new page for the town of Lanesborough."

The two entities agreed that they need to continue dialogue and collaborative work to make the mall's revitalization possible.

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Pittsfield Little League 11s, 10s See Tourney Runs End

By Leland Sports
PITTSFIELD , Mass. — After a strong outing by pitcher Cam Ginnity, the Holden Little League 11-year-old All-Stars defeated Pittsfield, 15-1, to move on in the Section 1 tournament on Sunday at Deming Park
Each team went into the elimination game with a 1-1 record.
Holden’s offense sparked early in the game with a series of walks finished off by a two-RBI single by Cole Pare, and a run scored on a passed ball.
During the game Pittsfields Offense struggled heavily against Ginnity
He registered five total strikeouts as well as going the distance in the run-rule win.
“Cam [Ginnity] is one of our better pitchers, he also has a really good team of players behind him,” Holden coach Matt Gull said.
Offensively, Holden’s Evan Zaccaria went 2-for-2 with a double, single and a walk.
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