NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Northampton has signed an agreement to buy the former First Baptist Church building at 298 Main Street in Northampton from local businessman Eric Suher for a final cost of $3.175 million.

Mayor Gina-Louise Sciarra signed the agreement, according to a news release sent to 22News from the Mayor’s office. The City is partnering with Community Action Pioneer Valley (CAPV) to create the Community Resilience Hub. The 14,500-square-foot building will serve as headquarters for the Department of Health and Human Services Division of Community Care, as well as a space for community use, and an emergency shelter.

“I am incredibly proud to reach this milestone for the City of Northampton. We have great plans for this space, and for the services it will provide to our entire community and especially our most vulnerable members,” shared Mayor Sciarra, “I am profoundly grateful to everyone who worked hard for years to make this acquisition a reality.”

“We’ve all been eagerly waiting for this day, and I’m thrilled that we’ve reached the phase where we can roll up our sleeves and build this critical resource,” said Clare Higgins, Executive Director of CAPV. 

The idea for a Community Resilience Hub began in 2019 as a key recommendation from the report A Downtown Northampton for Everyone: Residents, Visitors, Merchants, and People At-Risk.” The need for this type of community resource was made more evident during the COVID-19 pandemic when the demand for critical social services increased.

More information on the project can be found on the city’s Community Resilience Hub page, or contact the Mayor’s Office at 413-587-1249 or email