Brief thoughts on some of the events making news from around Franklin County and the North Quabbin area:
Dateline Greenfield: A clock has been started on the possibility of a biomass plant being built in Greenfield. As reported last week, a Superior Court judge has accepted the agreement between Madera Energy and some plant opponents specifying that the developer will have to go back to the Zoning Board of Appeals to have its revised cooling system plans considered and approved. Originally, Madera wanted to use a system that included waste water. But shortly after getting the special permit, officials announced a change to a dry cooling method. Under the agreement, a new ZBA review has to be scheduled within 120 days or the permit expires. Of course what still is an unknown here is whether this project can meet the state’s revised regulations. Nevertheless, the clock is ticking.
Dateline the region: We realize that the recent snowfall does not put us in a spring-like mood. But we should be taking some comfort in the lengthening days and that when we do have sunshine, it feels stronger. Meanwhile, in less than a week, a sure sign that spring is here will take place — the opening of the Major League Baseball season (Sunday, to be exact). Boston Red Sox fans will see the season start a week from today when the team — complete with some new players — will be in New York to open against the Yankees. We can’t wait.
Dateline Greenfield: Can anyone say they’re surprised to learn that Baystate Franklin Medical Center is interested in buying the property where the former Holy Trinity School sits? Given its proximity to the hospital, it would be a perfect way to expand BFMC’s campus, with the idea of taking down the two buildings on the property and building doctors offices there. We’ll be sad to see the school go, given its history (and that we thought with its stage, gym and kitchen, it would have made a great senior center/recreation center for the town). Still, it’s good that somebody wants to do something with the property.