There's new hope for developing the old Games and Lanes property in Agawam.
The city council has approved Agawam Mayor Bill Sapelli’s plan, which comes after years of unsuccessful efforts by the city’s former mayor.
People living in Agawam are going to see change coming to their town. The mayor hopes to see a brand new office space and nearby business owners said it’s about time.
“This is a completely different approach. It’s the district improvement financing that the state is pushing. With that particular format, what happens is and this is a misconception, it’s not additional taxes," Sapelli explained.
A municipality identifies a district – as Agawam has done with this site – and any increased revenue that comes in as a result of the property’s improvement, that money is set aside for that area.
“So it doesn’t impact residents or other businesses throughout the community, it’s just for that particular area and it’s not additional taxes," Sapelli said.
Western Mass News SkyDrone video shows all of this space on Walnut Street Extension available for development.
Sapelli said that he hopes to see some sort of new office space, as he sees a need for it in Agawam.
“If you put a building on Games and Lanes, if you put a building on the old motel space, if you put a building on Getty, that’s gonna increase the property value, so the difference in taxes based on that improvement will be set aside so that we can use that in a productive way to improve the infrastructure in that area," Sapelli noted.
Sapelli said what held people back in the past was that they were reluctant to spend tax dollars and that’s why this new plan has proven so successful.
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