Extensive renovation, hotel planned for historic Eagle St. building in North Adams

The Tower and Porter Block on Eagle Street could soon become a hotel. Plans for the four-story building go before the North Adams Planning Board on Monday.

NORTH ADAMS — The Tower and Porter Block on Eagle Street could soon be converted into a hotel — after an extensive interior renovation.

Eagle Street Holdings LLC, which owns the building, has submitted paperwork to the Planning Board for a 27-room hotel at the historic 34-36 Eagle St. building. The board will discuss the proposal at its meeting Monday.

The plans, outlined in a one-page narrative submitted by architect Barry Berg, call for a preservation of the vacant structure but substantial interior renovation.

The hotel will consist of 27 double-occupancy rooms, sized differently to accommodate the "oblique" plan configuration.

The developer also expects a bar and restaurant to fill the building's storefronts.

Eagle Street Holdings consists of principals Michael Gazal and Veselko Buntic, who are based in Long Island City, N.Y., according to publicly available corporate filings. Through their architect, the two declined to comment on the proposal until after the Planning Board meeting.

The two purchased the Eagle Street building for $60,000 from previous owner Domenica Douglas in November 2016.

Last year, the pair were also part of a group that purchased the Dowlin Block from Scarafoni Associates for $615,000 as Dowlin Building LLC.

City Councilor Benjamin Lamb, who has spearheaded the all-volunteer Eagle Street Initiative, said his initial reaction to the plans is "pumped," and that they appear to align with the group's goal of revitalizing the historic street.

"The building has a future life, and it's great to see a vision coming together for what that life may be," he said. "With the integration of both social and retail space as well, I think this could be a huge new driver of traffic on the street for all the businesses and stakeholders."

Glenn Maloney, president of the North Adams Chamber of Commerce, said he is excited to learn more about what the developers are proposing and how the plans look moving forward.

Exterior work on the Tower and Porter building will include repointing of exterior brick where necessary, installing insulated windows and reconfiguring the slope of the roof to improve drainage.

Inside, all nonbearing walls will be removed to facilitate the reconfiguration of the building into a hotel.

The four-story building is accessed at the first-floor level on Eagle Street and second-story level on Church Street.

According to the documents, access to the hotel lobby will happen on the Eagle Street side of the building, which will have its entrance ways lowered to become level with the sidewalk. Once inside the building, the lobby will be reached by stairs or a chairlift.

Drawings included with the application appear to indicate the developer plans to utilize the city-owned Center Street parking lot.

Adam Shanks can be reached at ashanks@berkshireeagle.com, at @EagleAdamShanks on Twitter, or 413-629-4517.