WILLIAMSTOWN -- Two upcoming meetings could help determine the future of two town-owned brownfield sites.
Residents can attend the two listening sessions, organized by the town's Affordable Housing Committee, to provide input on the old town garage site at 59 Water St. and the former Photech Mill at 330 Cole Ave.
"We are pleased to have arrived at this point, after a lot of work and expense, for two reasons," AHC Chairwoman Cathy Yamamoto said on Friday.
The committee is hopeful that each session will collect important information so developers can submit appropriate proposals for affordable housing on either site, she said.
In addition, the committee is fulfilling an obligation to reach "informed determinations" about how to best use land available in town, she said.
Residents called for a greater conversation on land use at two town meetings in April and May, when voters tabled warrant articles that would remove land from conservation for construction of housing, or take properties off the table for housing completely.
A meeting for the Water Street property will be on Monday, Sept. 30, and a meeting for Photech will be Thursday, Oct. 10. Both meetings are at 7 p.m. in the Williamstown Elementary School's auditorium at 115 Church St.
"While it will be the chosen developer's responsibility to create site plans, arrange financing and obtain necessary permits, community input is vitally important and will inform the way we structure the Requests for Proposals (RFP) for the two sites," Yamamoto said.
Work to clean up both properties have been ongoing for years.
The former Photech mill, which formerly processed film, went unused after being abandoned by its owners in the late 1980s.
A section of the old mill's roof collapsed in 2003, and that part of the building was demolished in 2005.
Roughly $2 million in federal, state and local funds have been spent removing silver contamination at Photech, Yamamoto said.
The 1.3 acre Water Street site was home to the town's garage until 1997, and the building was demolished in 2003.
Earlier this month, the committee chose a team of two consultants to run both community meetings and craft RFPs to elicit interest from developers: Connie Kruger of Amherst and Jennifer Goldson of Boston.
The committee hopes to hear from as many people as possible and has structured the sessions as interactive community workshops, Yamamoto said.
Anyone unable to attend either session is encouraged to submit questions about either site to the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org, Yamamoto said.
For more information about the sites, visit the committee's section on the town website at www.williamstown.ws.
To reach Edward Damon, email