SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Roderick Ireland Courthouse in Springfield will re-open for regular business on Wednesday, after going through a days-long deep cleaning. The future of the building, however, remains a subject of debate on the local and state level.
Last week, the state Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance put out their request for proposal for renovations at the courthouse. If the courthouse is to be renovated, a process that could take five to seven years, employees and court operations would have to be moved to a temporary space.
Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno is opposed to the idea of renovating the existing courthouse. Instead, he would like to see a new courthouse built along the Connecticut Riverfront in the North End, as part of a proposed development project unveiled last week, which would also include an 11-story apartment building, a marina, shops, and restaurant space.
Sarno argues that the renovation and rental proposal would come in at 2/3rds the cost of building an entirely new courthouse, and lack the economic benefits such a redevelopment of the Riverfront would bring.