So. Deerfield officials put final touches on pickle property

Recorder/Peter MacDonald
Site of the former Oxford pickle factory behind the town garage in South Deerfield

Recorder/Peter MacDonald Site of the former Oxford pickle factory behind the town garage in South Deerfield

SOUTH DEERFIELD — The for sale sign on the former Oxford pickle property is almost up.

Outgoing Town Administrator Bernie Kubiak said he will complete a plot plan for the land this week. Interim Town Administrator Wendy Foxmyn will then finish the request for proposal by the beginning of July.

Selectmen initially announced plans to sell the 16.3-acre property on Jewett Avenue in February.

With a sale, the town could see $40,000 added back to its tax rolls each year.

Whether it could be a housing complex, a shopping center or another pickle producer is up to developers to propose.

The selectmen have no specific use in mind. Instead, they will allow any potential buyer to propose a broad range of uses and get the permits within six months.

The land is within an expedited permitting zone.

Though the process could move fast, any proposal is still subject to contractual obligations in the deed and selectmen review.

So far, there is no asking price.

In 2006, the factory closed and the property was priced at $2.2 million.

In 2007, the town took out a $1.7 million loan to buy the property with the hopes of developing it.

The barren property marked a stark contrast from its years as a bustling pickle factory with its strong smells oftentimes wafting through the village of South Deerfield.

Since 1896 under different owners, the factory produced and packed pickles In recent years it employed 65 workers.

On 2.5 acres of the property, construction of a 15,500-square-foot town highway garage is under way beside the town’s existing garage.

You can reach Kathleen McKiernan at:
kmckiernan@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261 ext. 268.

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