downtown Springfield

MGM Springfield

Another obstacle to the construction of the MGM Springfield casino has been removed.

The city of Springfield, following a search that took several months, has found a new location for the headquarters of the department of Health and Human Services, which is being evicted from a building that MGM plans to tear down to build an $800 million resort casino.

Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris said the public health office plans to move just a few blocks from 95 State St. into a building at 1145 Main St. that once housed a health clinic.

WAMC

Restaurant Week, which is a fixture on the cultural calendars in many cities, will debut this week in Springfield, Massachusetts. 

The first Springfield Restaurant Week will feature 18 participating eateries charging the fixed price of $20.15 per person for a 2-3 course dinner meal.  It is being held April 23-May 2.

" We want to show people that Springfield is happening, " said Morgan Drewniany, assistant director of the Springfield Business Improvement District, which is administering and publicizing the event.

A series of construction and redevelopment projects will be accomplished in 2017 that officials in Springfield, Massachusetts believe will allow the city to shed its image as a decaying former industrial city.    Springfield’s chief development officer laid out a vision of the city’s economic future – some of it admittedly speculative -- in a presentation last night to business leaders and civic boosters.

WAMC

Hundreds gathered today for the official groundbreaking of the MGM Springfield casino. The event marked a milestone in the development of the casino industry in Massachusetts and the planned transformation of downtown Springfield.

Against the backdrop of a tornado-damaged nearly century old former elementary school MGM officials welcomed elected officials, business and civic leaders, neighborhood residents, and state gaming industry regulators to celebrate the symbolic kickoff of construction of the state’s first casino resort.

WAMC

Massachusetts is the most Irish state in the country, with just over 21 percent of the population saying they are of Irish descent.  So, it is not surprising Saint Patrick’s Day is cause for ceremony and celebration.

   About 200 people gathered in front of Springfield City Hall Tuesday morning and watched the green, white, and orange flag of Ireland raised up a pole to fly over the city hall plaza for the day.

WAMC

A long vacant tornado-damaged building in Springfield, Massachusetts was demolished today, as city officials vowed to continue a neighborhood-by-neighborhood crackdown on blight.

A former auto parts store on Main Street in Springfield was torn down Monday. The building had been vacant for more than a decade. It was damaged by the 2011 tornado. A car crashed through it.  The single story building had been seized by the city for non-payment of taxes and Springfield officials could not find anyone to buy it for redevelopment.

WAMC

A family-run market that has been a fixture in the Italian American community in Springfield, Massachusetts for nearly a century is about to close.  The tiny market would be in the shadow of the resort casino that MGM is about to build. 

There will be no lines out the door and down the block of people waiting this summer to buy the Italian lemon ice –made from a secret family recipe.  Tiny Albano’s market on East Columbus Ave. in Springfield’s South End neighborhood is closing after 73 years in business.

MGM Springfield

MGM is planning a spring groundbreaking for the $800 million resort casino the Las Vegas-based entertainment giant is building in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts. Several important steps in the complex project will happen over the next few weeks.

Although construction cranes won’t appear in the sky for several months, workers and visitors in downtown Springfield will shortly notice changes as MGM prepares the 14.5 acre site for the project that promises to transform Springfield, economically and culturally, for decades to come.

WAMC

With an $82 million renovation of the derelict Union Station in Springfield, Massachusetts under way, officials went looking for guidance from transit-oriented development in two Connecticut cities.

A delegation of business and civic leaders from greater Springfield got a possible glimpse of the future when they looked out over the ornate great hall of Union Station in New Haven, Ct. where 11,000 people a day pass through mostly off commuter trains to New York City.

Ridership rose dramatically on Pioneer Valley Transit Authority buses after Massachusetts state-financed service changes took effect earlier this year.  Nationally, it appears public transit is growing more popular.

   Ridership jumped 12 percent in September and 9 percent in October as the state’s second-largest transit authority rolled out the biggest change in fixed-route bus schedules in nearly a decade.  PVTA Administrator Mary MacInnes said she was thrilled by the latest ridership data.

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