MassDEP Air Quality Advisory Continues

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Due to elevated levels of ozone expected Thursday, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has issued an air quality alert effective 11 a.m. through 11 p.m. on June 20, 2024, in nine counties across Massachusetts. 
 
This includes Berkshire County.
 
Air quality is expected to be unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include people with heart or lung disease, such as asthma, older adults, children, teenagers, and people who are active outdoors. People with either lung disease or heart disease are at greater risk from exposure to air pollution.
 
MassDEP advises people in sensitive groups to reduce prolonged or heavy outdoor exertion, take more breaks, do less intense activities, follow asthma action plans, and keep quick relief medicine handy. Watch for symptoms such as coughing or shortness of breath.
 
More details are available, including forecasts and real-time data, at MassDEP's MassAir Online site.
 
 

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Pittsfield Starbucks Closed Temporarily

By Sabrina DammsiBerkshires Staff

A sign outside the coffee shop assures customers the closure is only temporary. 
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Your alarm goes off, you get ready, and you leave for school, work, or whatever your appointment a little bit early to get a cup of coffee to start your day, only to find that the Pittsfield Starbucks, located at  555 Hubbard Ave., is closed. 
 
The sign has been removed, and the drive-through is blocked, but Starbucks coffee addicts need not worry — this closure is only temporary. 
 
The coffee shop closed its doors temporarily on July 7 to undergo a standard renovation with the chain's new Siren System, a Starbucks spokesperson said. 
 
According to the signage, the reopening date is projected to be Aug. 21. 
 
According to its website, the Siren System is part of the chain's Starbucks Reinvention plan, which aims to improve the experience for partners and staff by responding to changing needs and increasing demands. 
 
"As a standard course of business, we continually evaluate our store portfolio using various criteria to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers," the spokesperson said. 
 
The chain's article on unveiling its innovations said, "Over the past few years, the number of cold beverages ordered has surpassed the number of hot drinks year-round. And, two in three drinks ordered have requested customizations such as extra espresso shots and flavorings."
 
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