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Another buyer beats mayor to Meadows

Another buyer has spoken for the Meadows Golf Course before the town had a chance to make an offer on the property. Greenfield's waste water treatment plant can be seen in the background. 
 Recorder/Paul Franz

Another buyer has spoken for the Meadows Golf Course before the town had a chance to make an offer on the property. Greenfield's waste water treatment plant can be seen in the background. Recorder/Paul Franz

GREENFIELD — It looks like the town won’t be purchasing the 80-year-old Meadows Golf Course on Deerfield Street after all.

A day after Mayor William Martin decided to move ahead with plans to purchase the golf course by asking Town Council how much it would be willing to pay for the property, he withdrew that request after learning someone else had made an offer, and it was accepted.

The nine-hole course had been listed on loopnet.com, a commercial real estate listing website, as a “distressed” property that needs lender approval for a short sale. Florence Savings Bank is the owner.

Joseph Traczynski, senior vice president for the bank, said the bank does not have a lot to say about the sale at this point.

“We are in the very early stages,” said Traczynski. “An offer has been made, but there is no purchase and sale agreement at this point.”

Martin said everyone had an “equal chance” at the purchase and someone happened to beat the town to the offer.

Terri White was the previous owner. She owned the property in 2011, when Tropical Storm Irene pummeled it and severely damaged the riverside course and clubhouse.

White, who could not be reached for comment, tried to rebuild, but the course didn’t reopen until late 2012, and even then not all of the nine holes were playable. The course is near the Green River and bounded by the Deerfield River, which often floods the course at spring freshet but not with the devastating effect of the flooding brought by Irene.

Martin said he does not yet know who the buyer is or what he, she or they plan to do with it, but is hoping it will be used for something recreational. He said the land is “recreational chapter land” according to the state, so most of it will remain green.

The mayor said the town will still have to think about what it wants to do.

“We obviously have no choice but to accept that someone else has bought it, but we do have to consider the fact that some day the EPA may mandate an expansion of our wastewater treatment plant and we’re going to need some land to do so,” said Martin of the town facility adjacent to the golf course.

He said if that happens, the town would either have to consider buying a piece of the property from the new owner or taking some of the land to accommodate an expansion, when and if the time comes.

“I’m not sure the new owner will need or use all 50 acres anyway,” said Martin. “Maybe the town can also work out a deal to buy some of the riverfront so that it can move ahead with plans to put a park there some day. I hope we can work something out.”

Martin had big plans for the property, including putting a dog park there, maybe a skate park, a walking and sitting park closer to Deerfield Street, and a toddler water park. He had also thought the clubhouse could be leased to a retailer or that town committee meetings could be held there.

According to town assessors, the property zoned commercial at 398 Deerfield St. is assessed at $552,098. The price listed on loopnet.com was $570,000.

The property is on a flood plain, so Martin said there are parts of the 50 acres that won’t be able to be built on.

Gary Noga, Daniel Majewski and John Stacy owned the golf course for 15 years until they sold it to Alexandra and David Nunez in 2005 for $1.2 million. In 2008, there was a foreclosure sale and the course never opened that year. White bought the golf course in late 2008 or early 2009.

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