Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?
These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.
Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...
...seems to be working so far
Friday, March 20, 2009
First Rule Of Success: Play Well With Others And Share
Old Sturbridge Village has stepped up and is leasing an 18 room building on the site of the former Lodges at Old Sturbridge Village to the Town for temporary use for Town offices while the renovation of the Town Hall is underway. As Ann Lindblad of OSV stated, "I think it is a win-win for both the town and Old Sturbridge Village."
I think so, too.
The building, which has been empty since the closing of the Lodges a few years ago, will require little to make it inhabitable by Town workers. Some cleaning, maybe some painting, and the computer network is already being put in place.
This is a great idea. A vacant building is being used instead of trailers, or some other site, and the cost is modest compared to another option that scored high in the eyes of the Town. $60,000.00 for a years lease with an option for additional time at the same $5000.00 per month.
What is impressive is that OSV didn't try to make a killing here. The Town was stuck in a jam, and this space was available. It met the requirements that were sought by the town, and the price was right. OSV most certainly could have taken advantage of the towns predicament, but was fair.
More than fair.
A few things can come from this kind of collaboration. Continued trust, and a continued great working relationship between OSV and the Town, are but two. Town workers, selectmen, and the Town Administrator seeing a fruitful use for the property at 371 Main Street, and maybe being inspired to see something more there when their lease is finished is another.. A small taste of rental income may inspire OSV to actively plan for something more at the site as well. Call me, I have a lot of ideas. Income producing ideas. Those are the best kind. Keep in mind that fresh eyes on any project can offer ideas never considered before.
With the temporary Town Hall site now set, and a moving date seen to occur within the next month, we only have to sit back and watch the renovation at the Town Hall and Center School take place. That intersection of Route 131, Maple Street, and Old Route 15 is going to be one busy place for the foreseeable future.
As much as I like this idea, what I would like even better is a use to be found for the former Lodges site after the lease is finished. A use that would be both beneficial to OSV, and to the Town.
OSV, call me. We'll do lunch.