ADAMS -- Stick with us and stay positive, Town Administrator Jonathan Butler asked residents at Wednesday night’s Selectmen’s meeting, because 2013 promises to bring beneficial developments for the town.
In what he called a "stump speech," Butler said he believes the town’s toilsome work throughout 2012 on administrative needs, grant writing and other preparations has put it in position to see big gains next year.
"[2012 has] been one of those years with a lot of build up," Butler said. " ... In the upcoming year, great things are going to be happening."
Butler first pointed to an Ashuwillticook Rail Trail extension from Hoosac to Lime Street, to begin after winter’s thaw. Next, a Mausert Block refurbishment project on Park Street, to finish within the year, with three businesses already slated to fill it.
According to the Mausert Block’s website, these businesses include a performing arts school, a fusion cuisine restaurant with outdoor seating, and a professional real estate office.
These are joined by recently opened businesses Malcolm’s Fashion and BoardShire on Park Street -- meaning 2013 would enjoy a total of at least five new businesses on the town’s main stretch.
New activity in the Adams Memorial School, a town building officials have endeavored to fill since the end of a school district lease in October, also looks to be shaping up. Windsor marinara sauce company Ooma Tesoro’s and the town Youth Center have each submitted proposals to reuse the kitchen and administrative spaces, respectively.
"It’s cleaned up and empty, ready for whatever the next step in its life is," Butler said.
Next week, Butler said at the meeting, a group of town officials will review the proposals and recommend to Selectmen whether to move forward with lease negotiations or go back to the drawing board.
Finally, Butler noted that infrastructure work at the Greylock Glen would continue to see progress, "to serve all recreational users who frequent the site." Over $2 million in development improved Gould and Thiel roads in 2012, and officials are hoping for more to happen next year. Selectmen plan to review the draft of a requests for proposals document that will seek developers to build a campsite at the Glen at a workshop meeting next week.
This year also saw a major development for the town that was updated at Wednesday’s meeting.
Erica Samson, director of the Council on Aging (COA), reported an estimated doubling in outreach and services since the COA relocated to the Adams Visitors Center in September.
"We’re growing and reaching a younger group, which is really nice," Samson said. "It’s been a big success."
Last month, Samson reported 927 transportation trips, lunch crowds at times reaching 60, and good attendance at the council’s many weekly events. Since September, 108 new names have been added to the council’s list of individuals serviced, and many more were provided walk-in assistance, according to Samson.
To reach Phil Demers, email email@example.com.