Great Barrington sells its old fire station for $50,000


GREAT BARRINGTON -- After more than three years of discussion and negotiations, the former fire station on Castle Street has been sold.

The sale price is $50,000 to 20 Castle Street LLC, a group of businessmen led by Tom Borshoff. A host of ancillary costs are associated with the 115-year-old, three-story building.

In addition to the sale price, the town will be responsible for about $270,000 in environmental cleanup costs, according to Town Manager Jennifer Tabakin. Most of the costs are associated with the removal of lead paint and asbestos, she said.

Renovations to the exterior alone are estimated at between $500,000 and $600,000, according to attorney Edward G. McCormick, who represents 20 Castle Street LLC.

The fire station’s brick exterior has been crumbling for at least several years. That remediation will take time and money, he said.

The interior renovation costs remain a mystery, according to McCormick.

"We won’t really know until we get in there," he said.

Borshoff’s has said he plans to convert the historic building into a vocational training center, although McCormick said those plans are not set in stone.

Still, the sale ends an extended period of negotiations between the town and the buyer.

"We first submitted a request for proposals in February of 2011," said McCormick. "So it’s been a long road."

The town built a newer, larger fire station in 2009 to house the town’s larger fire trucks and more sophisticated firefighting equipment. There were rumblings about the size of the new station and even more rumblings about how the town would divest itself of the old station.


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