Greenfield mayor proposes rezoning to expand industrial space

  • Silvio O. Conte Drive in the Interstate 91 Industrial Park in Greenfield. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

  • The Interstate 91 Industrial Park in Greenfield. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

  • Greenfield Street in the Interstate 91 Industrial Park in Greenfield. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

Staff Writer
Published: 8/9/2022 8:18:36 PM
Modified: 8/9/2022 8:15:19 PM

GREENFIELD — In an effort to address what officials believe to be a lack of industrial space in Franklin County, the Planning Board will consider the mayor’s proposal to expand the Interstate 91 Industrial Park, located northeast of downtown Greenfield and directly off Route 2.

Specifically, during a public information meeting next week, the Planning Board will consider the potential expansion of the industrial park to the other side of Route 2, to frontage along French King Highway, also known as Route 2A, according to a city press release.

This would come in the form of rezoning 11 parcels east of King Road and north of French King Highway from General Commercial — which provides an area for mixed retail, commercial and industrial uses — to Planned Industry, which is meant for manufacturing and industrial development.

According to Mayor Roxann Wedegartner, the revised zoning map would allow for the growth of the city’s advanced manufacturing base.

“We are running out of land in the industrial park,” she said. “It’s my hope that rezoning these parcels will serve as a catalyst for job creation and economic development.”

Planning and Development Director Eric Twarog said the proposal follows a 2018 Franklin Regional Council of Governments report, which documented a “lack of industrial park space in Franklin County.” According to the report, the Interstate 91 Industrial Park, which was built in the 1980s, includes 36 parcels, totaling 268.3 acres.

Existing businesses in the industrial park include Summit Ice, Valley Steel Stamp, Northeast Biodiesel and BETE Fog Nozzle.

“There are a lot of entities in the industrial park that want to expand, but don’t have the space to do so,” Twarog said. “And other Franklin County entities have difficulty finding industrial space.”

The 11 parcels, which amount to 40 to 50 acres, include the land currently owned by Ceruzzi Properties where a 135,000-square-foot big box store was long proposed. That land is still under lease by Stop & Shop, according to Wedegartner.

“Out of all the parcels there — the 11 for rezoning — there are six that are vacant,” Twarog noted. “So it won’t have any impact on those except zoning changes. There are no existing structures.”

The other parcels, Wedegartner said, include a few residences and an automotive business. She noted any zoning changes wouldn’t prevent that business owner from operating, and homeowners wouldn’t be expected to move.

Wedegartner plans to outline the rezoning proposal at a public information meeting on Thursday, Aug. 18, at 6 p.m. at the John Zon Community Center at 35 Pleasant St. If the Planning Board votes to proceed, a public hearing will be held on a future date.

Reporter Mary Byrne can be reached at mbyrne@recorder.com or 413-930-4429. Twitter: @MaryEByrne.


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