Plans afoot for ex-sawmill site on Route 9 in Hadley

  • Hadley Town Hall

Staff Writer
Thursday, January 18, 2018

HADLEY — An Amherst developer interested in redeveloping a Route 9 parcel that has been the longtime site of a former sawmill and lumber operation will come before the Zoning Board of Appeals next week.

Barry Roberts, whose 1836 Development Enterprise LLC, purchased the former Kicza Lumber property at 303 Russell St. for $1 million last spring, is seeking a finding from the municipal board to determine how the site could be used.

The board meets at Town Hall Jan. 23 at 7:15 p.m.

While the property is commercially zoned, it has just 197 feet of frontage on Route 9, less than the 250 feet required by town bylaws.

Roberts said he doesn’t have a specific project in mind for the site because he doesn’t yet know what decision the Zoning Board will make.

“We need to have a finding before we can do anything with the property,” Roberts said.

He calls it “step one” in conceiving reuse for the site, which contains 3.9 acres and several buildings associated with the sawmill operations, which had been there for more than 40 years.

The parcel is between T.J.’s Taylor Rental to the west and Steve Lewis Subaru to the east, with some of the frontage used by a roasting operation for Rao’s Coffee Roasting Co., LLC. Prior to Roberts’ purchase of the property, owners of the car dealership had eyed it for potential expansion.

The sawmill was incorporated with the Massachusetts Corporations Division by the Kicza family in 1979.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.