LANESBOROUGH -- A building that housed the former Party Barn on Route 7 was torn down on Thursday -- barely a week after the property owners were cleared to operate a 9,100-square-foot Dollar General store on the site.
The demolition began about 7 a.m. and work continued until 5 p.m.
The building, which also had once housed a bridal shop, is on South Main Street across from Bull Hill Road. It had been vacant for many months.
Resident William "Liam" Shirley, who owned the three-acre swath where the store will be located, recently sold two acres to Primax Properties, owners of the Dollar General brand. Shirley will continue to operate a storage business on his remaining one-acre parcel.
The company first addressed the Planning Board in August. For months, the company amended its proposal based on the board's requests. Changes were made to the amount of frontage, the number of parking spaces and the eventual building's facade. Planning Board members sought an appearance more friendly to New England than the national retailer's typical fare.
The Planning Board voted last Monday to grant Primax the special permit to operate the store on the site.
Some residents opposed the proposal.
"We had some complaints but really it was by right that the building could be put in and there wasn't much anyone could do," said Selectman John Goerlach.
During meetings on Primax's special permit request, Planning Board members said the proposal followed the town's bylaws and was consistent with the use of the zone the property falls within.
Dollar General is headquartered in Goodlettsville, Tenn. The chain operates more than 10,000 stores in 40 states with annual sales of $14.8 billion.
The retailer also seeks to build stores in Sheffield, Williamstown and Pittsfield, but these remain in the approvals process.
To reach Phil Demers:
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