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Northampton agrees former church deal for Resilience Hub

Northampton agrees former church deal for Resilience Hub


Published: 06/04/2023 16:00:03

NORTHAMPTON A long-vacant church building in downtown Northampton will officially house the Community Resilience Hub.

At the end of Thursday’s 2-hour city council meeting, which focused primarily on the city’s fiscal year 2024 operating budget, Mayor Gina-Louise Sciarra announced that the acquisition of the former First Baptist Church in 298 Main Street is complete.

“I am incredibly pleased to be able to report to council that I have accepted and exercised the option on 298 Main Street, the former Baptist Church, for the resilience center,” Sciarra said to applause and cheers from councilors at the municipal Council. bedrooms. Both parties have signed this agreement. It is enormous. It is enormous.

The city pays a final negotiated price of $3.175 million when the deal closes within a month.

I was really happy to be able to celebrate this milestone with all of you tonight,” Sciarra said.

The community hub will support residents facing chronic and acute stress, such as homelessness, and serve as an emergency center in the event of a disaster. It is envisioned as a centralized location to serve the needs of vulnerable populations and to be the site of the city’s Community Care Division.

The next steps will formalize Community Action Pioneer Valley as the lead agency managing and coordinating the hub, Sciarra said, and move quickly to building rehabilitation plans.

The 118-year-old church, located next to Forbes Library, has been vacant since 1993, when it was acquired by promoter Eric Suher, owner of Iron Horse Entertainment Group. It has approximately 14,500 square feet of space.

Funding for the hub project, including the purchase of the building, comes from sources such as $1.6 million from the Marijuana Community Impact Fee and a $200,000 pledge from Smith College . The city also received approximately $507,000 in block grant funds for community development and $53,000 in other donations.





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