The old municipal building on South Street in the town of Ware has been vacant for years.
But in September, it will be torn down to make way for the construction of 119 units of market-rate apartments for senior citizens at a cost of $15 million.
Planners see the project attracting an influx of newcomers and a re-birth of this Hampshire County town with a population of 10,000.
“We have a lot of amenities,” Community Development Director Ruben Flores-Marzan told 22News. “And while people get to live in the town, they eat out at the restaurants and the cafes and enjoy nature.”
The housing for older residents will be located conveniently next to Baystate Mary Lane Hospital, near where the old municipal building has been a fixture for generations.
“It served as the courthouse, it served as a school, it was the county seat for quite some time,” Ginny Barnard-Mosso explained. “It’s been vacant, but it still means something to the town’s people.”
The new apartments are expected to be finished 14 months after the old municipal building is demolished.